Historical Archive

A journey into the historical memory of Giunti Editore. The Archive, established at the behest of Sergio Giunti, makes it possible to go back through the publisher’s history from the 19th century to today. In it are conserved the documents and publications of the various publishing houses that have become a part of the current publishing group. A collective biography composed of important names in the history of Italian publishing and cultural life such as Barbèra, Paggi, Bemporad, Marzocco, Giacomo Agnelli, Aldo Martello, and Editrice Universitaria. Their catalogues include intellectuals and essayists such as Carducci, Tommaseo, Pirandello, Collodi, Salgari, Vamba, Artusi and many others.
The Giunti Historical Archive, with its documents, historical library and iconographic collection, is open to consultation by scholars and researchers, compatibly with the demands of the publishing company’s operations. The Archive is located in one of the sections of the 13th-century Villa La Loggia in Florence, current operational headquarters of Giunti Editore.


The documentation conserved in the Archive was produced by the various publishing companies during their day-to-day operations. Currently, the documents are divided into eight collections. The largest in terms of size and importance are those of the two historic Florentine publishing houses, G. Barbèra Editore and R. Bemporad e Figlio. Linked by their common 19th-century, Risorgimento origins, they achieved a position of primary importance in the Italian publishing panorama.
The Barbèra Collection is made up of over 1000 files documenting the history of the publisher from 1855 to 1959; the collection also includes the private archive of Piero Barbèra (1854-1921), who succeeded his father Gaspero (1818-1880) as head of the company. The Bemporad company archive, composed of over 3000 dossiers, covers the period from 1890 to 1965. Particularly abundant is the documentation relative to the interwar period when Bemporad, under the leadership of Enrico Bemporad (1868-1944), reached its maximum expansion. These important sources for the history of 19th and 20th-century Italian culture have been declared as being of notable historical interest by the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities.
Consultation is facilitated by inventories and content lists of the archive’s documentation.


An essential part of the Historical Archive, the Library contains the books published by the various publishing houses that became a part of Giunti during the 20th century. Moreover, the Library is constantly growing thanks to the addition of each new book published by the Giunti group. It currently holds over 35,000 books and 40 periodicals. The catalogue ranges from books for young people to scholastic texts, literary classics to non-fiction, and popular education texts to handbooks.
In order to highlight Giunti’s diverse roots, the books are subdivided according to publisher and ordered chronologically by date of publishing. To facilitate research and consultation, a digital catalogue of all the library’s holdings is in the process of being created.
The Library also permits the consultation of a conspicuous number of lesser publications and promotional material, such as pamphlets, advertising brochures, and book catalogues.


The Archives also conserves a rich patrimony of original sketches and plates. More than one thousand folders contain the illustrations used for the Group’s books, particularly those targeting younger audiences. The artists represented include some of the most important Italian illustrators, among them Filiberto Scarpelli (1870-1933), Duilio Cambellotti (1876-1960), Giorgio Kienerk (1879-1948), Antonio Rubino (1880-1964), and Sergio Tofano (1886-1973). A separate section is dedicated to the iconography of Pinocchio, whose first edition was published by Paggi in 1883. It includes the original drawings for various editions of Carlo Collodi’s masterpiece, realized by Enrico Mazzanti (1852-1893), Carlo Chiostri (1863-1939), Attilio Mussino (1878-1954), Piero Bernardini (1891-1974), and Attilio Cassinelli, illustrations which have fueled the imagination of generations of readers.
An important source for the history of Italian book illustration is thus made available for consultation.

Consultation Service
Via Bolognese 165, 50139 Firenze
Tel 055/5062312
Fax 055/5062298
Rules for

The Historical Archives permits the consultation of the library’s books and the documentary and iconographic collections.
Admission is granted to scholars who make a justified request in connection with their current research. Consultation requests must be sent either by mail or email. The Archive’s staff will communicate the date on which the applicant may consult the material.

Consultation of the documentary collections requires the authorization of the Soprintendenza archivistica per la Toscana:
Via de’ Ginori 7, Firenze
Tel 055/271111.

IThe application form is also available at the Historical Archive.
Those who use the Archive commit to providing a copy of publications in which the Archive’s documentation is used and cited.

Initiatives and