The National Central Library and the National Szecheny Library of Hungary are co-hosting an exhibition on Chinese ancient books at the NSL entitled "Imprint of Civilization: An Amazing Journey of Books." The opening ceremony was held on October 15, and the exhibition will run from October 18 to December 15, during which ancient oracle bone scripts and rubbings of bronze and stone inscriptions will be on display. In addition, there will be other displays introducing seals, woodblocks, ancient manuscripts, the evolution of printing techniques, the formation of books, ancient facsimiles, rare books from the NCL's special collection, and the evolution of bookbinding. Many rare and valuable items will be showcased.
To bring more attention to the exhibition, the NCL held a session of its Taiwan Lectures on Chinese Studies series before the opening ceremony. Max Ko-wu Huang, a researcher from the Institute of Modern History at Academia Sinica, was invited to speak on "Admired by Scholars and Laymen Alike: On a Few Classics in Chinese Society." This was an excellent opportunity for local Hungarian visitors to learn about several canonical classical works from traditional China.
Representative Wen-lung Tao from the Taipei Representative Office in Hungary and László Vizi, Head of Department of Cultural Diplomacy in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary, were both in attendance and spoke at the opening ceremony. NSL Director-General László Tüske, and NCL Director-General Tseng also made remarks and expressed gratitude for the widespread support for both the exhibition and the lecture. They hoped that cultural exchange between the two countries can continue, and that future collaboration can become more frequent and achieve a greater depth. The NCL also donated 17 titles of books (31 volumes) published by the NCL and other Taiwanese publishers to the NSL to add to its collection.
The lecture and opening ceremony attracted some 200 local visitors, who found the exquisite design of the exhibition and the rich variety of content very impressive. Visitors could also participate in fun activities, such as Chinese New Year pictures printing, woodblock printing, or Chinese tea sampling. The NCL also set an interactive e-postcard machine where visitors could get their photos taken against a background of traditional Chinese cultural images and themes from ancient books.
Director-General Tseng stated that by co-hosting exhibitions and lectures, as well as through publications exchange, Taiwan and Hungary can create mutual understandings of each other's culture. For Taiwan, this exhibition was a very successful instance of cultural diplomacy. NSL Director-General Tüske not only spoke of the success of the event, but also emphasized that this special day was Taiwan Day in Budapest.