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In the 6th century, at the very close of the Classical period, the great libraries of the Mediterranean world remained those of Constantinople and Alexandria.
A library is organized for use and maintained by a public body, an institution, a corporation, or a private individual.
The state archives were kept in a structure on the slope between the Roman Forum and the Capitoline Hill.
Private libraries appeared during the late republic: Seneca inveighed against libraries fitted out for show by illiterate owners who scarcely read their titles in the course of a lifetime, but displayed the scrolls in bookcases (armaria) of citrus wood inlaid with ivory that ran right to the ceiling: "by now, like bathrooms and hot water, a library is got up as standard equipment for a fine house (domus).
In the West, the first public libraries were established under the Roman Empire as each succeeding emperor strove to open one or many which outshone that of his predecessor.
Rome’s first public library was established by Asinius Pollio.
It was the first to employ an architectural design that separated works into Greek and Latin.
(completed in 135) by Celsus’ son, Gaius Julius Aquila (consul, 110 AD).
The library was built to store 12,000 scrolls and to serve as a monumental tomb for Celsus.
The “libraries” were cataloged using colophons, which are a publisher’s imprint on the spine of a book, or in this case a tablet.
The colophons stated the series name, the title of the tablet, and any extra information the scribe needed to indicate.