Gabriel - Gateway to Europe's National Libraries - now available in a new and totally revised format

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After 5 years of existence Gabriel has been completely redesigned and updated in a new and more user-friendly layout.

Gabriel is the World-Wide-Web service covering 41 European national libraries from the 39 countries who are represented in the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL). This multilingual Internet service offers access to consistently structured information about European national libraries, with details about their printed and electronic collections as well as instructions on how to gain access to their online catalogues and services. Information is offered in the most commonly-used European languages, namely English, French and German.

A particular treat for the eyes on Gabriel is the joint online exhibition "Treasures of Europe's National Libraries" : an illustrated selection of rare and precious treasures that can be seen in national libraries.

The websites of European national libraries can be searched simultaneously via a central search facility. For example, if one wants to know which of the libraries holds a special collection of literature by and about Sigmund Freud - the founder of psychoanalysis - one will find a wealth of references. This search would retrive numerous useful indicators and links would then be offered to the websites of the national libraries of Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Lithuania, Switzerland and Slovenia.

In order to be globally available and to guarantee rapid access Gabriel is "mirrored" and is available simultaneously via five European servers, thus ensuring that the service is always available.

Dr. Elisabeth Niggemann, Director General of Die Deutsche Bibliothek, and Chair of the Gabriel Board says: "This free-of charge Internet service is an example of successful European cooperation and it makes an important contribution to the construction of a European Virtual Library". Gabriel is considered to be an excellent model and a viable platform for further networking developments and services in the international library system in addition to its original function as an overall European Online Guide.

Gabriel is accessible via the following web addresses:

Background

The acronym Gabriel stands for GAteway and BRIdge to Europe's National Libraries.
GABRIEL is the official Web-Service of 41 European national libraries from 39 countries that are represented in the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL). A Board consisting of the directors of five national libraries directs Gabriel on behalf of CENL. Die Deutsche Bibliothek, the national library of Germany, holds the chair at the present time. Coordinated by the central Gabriel Editor, a dedicated Gabriel Team of staff from six national libraries is responsible for the daily running of the service. The Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the national library of the Netherlands, provides the editor. He is responsible for the day-to-day practical work and the technical operations. There are contact persons in each of the national libraries who are responsible for the updating of local data which is then scrutinised by a team of language editors (who are native speakers of English, French and German) before the information is fed into the joint updating database which has been especially developed for this purpose.