Elves, people and books

Printer-friendly versionPDF version


The National Library of Foreign Literature (OIK) in Budapest reopened its doors on Saturday, 6 April 2024, with a public family day, which was dedicated to the world of the Lord of the Rings, including the ceremonial unveiling of the 100-volume Tolkien collection.

In his welcome speech delivered at the family day, which marked the opening of the OIK for the full opening hours and which evoked the works of J. R. R. Tolkien, Dávid Rózsa, the Director General of the National Széchényi Library, emphasised: 
"On Tolkien Day, we celebrate not only the aesthetics of the written works, but also the narrative voice, the community and the tradition that creates the occasion here at the National Library of Foreign Literature. From today, the OIK is the home of the – still growing – 100-volume Tolkien collection, the ceremonial installation of which is the long-term essence of our encounter. We will continue to add to this collection, including a three-volume collection of Tolkien's poems to be published in the autumn."

Following the Director General's welcome address, Paul Fox, UK Ambassador to Hungary, delivered his opening speech. In his speech, Paul Fox underlined: 
"Tolkien was more than a writer. He was a creator of worlds and his genius went beyond storytelling. He invented languages, built civilisations and explored enduring themes. Today, we pay tribute to the lessons brought to life by Tolkien's legacy and his stories. Let us celebrate together the world-creating magic of his imagination."


After the opening ceremony, the programme continued with the ceremonial unveiling of the 100-volume Tolkien collection in the library's first-floor lending room.

In her speech, Adrienn Deák, co-president of the Hungarian Tolkien Society, underlined:
"It has been a cherished dream of ours for many years to make the original Tolkien volumes published in Hungary and the original English Tolkien volumes available to the public. We have long wished to have this housed in the National Library of Foreign Literature, and I believe that the delivery of today's collection will advance and support Tolkien research in Hungary."

Jointly organised by the OSZK, the OIK and the Hungarian Tolkien Society, the all-day programme included lectures, workshops, Tolkien-inspired board games, special language lessons, craft activities and film replicas for families to enjoy. Visitors could get a souvenir featuring texts in elf language, there was fairy hair weaving, a quiz and a sing-along. In the games room, visitors could relax by trying out Tolkien-inspired board games, but they could also buy products from the Middle-earth fair, and try out bead weaving and bookmark making.

To make the reopening of the OIK a memorable event, the organisers aimed to provide the whole family with valuable and interesting activities that would help everyone learn about foreign languages, literature and music in an entertaining way.


Our family day with the Hungarian Tolkien Society attracted
nearly 500 visitors to the National Library of Foreign Literature.
Thank you for your interest; we are looking forward to welcoming you to
the friendly home of languages and world literature in Molnár Street!

Opening hours of the OIK:
Monday: 10.00–17.00
Tuesday: 10.00–17.00
Wednesday: 10.00–19.00
Thursday: closed
Friday: 10.00–19.00
The book lending machine at the entrance is available 24/7.


The OIK is one of the youngest public libraries in Hungary and has been part of the NSZL since December 2021. With its unique collection, its constantly upgrading services and its infrastructure, the OIK is an important and increasingly indispensable information centre. Its mission is to collect documents in original languages, mainly contemporary world literature, music and linguistics, and to coordinate the Hungarian national minority libraries. It also performs traditional public library functions, regularly organising concerts, readings and book launches.
The collection includes literary, linguistic and musical material from the major world languages, the nationalities of Hungary and the neighbouring countries, as well as documents on similar themes from the minor languages, dead languages and artificial languages.



More photos, video


Related content:

Tolkien Day at the National Library of Foreign Literature