The Cleveland Public Library

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Cleveland Public Library

The Cleveland Public Library is a classical Renaissance (early 15th and 17th century architecture) design. The main building has five stories, each with the same height of a two-story building. The facade exhibits nine bay windows with pavilions on both sides. The rusticated base features sets of wall balustrade having large arched windows above with Corinthian columns. A set of stairs are on the same level as the balustrade leading up to the entrance.

The entrance to the library consists of three large bays with “kneeling” windows on either side, each with a decorative tympanum. The main door has a large arch embedded with rosettes and a keystone representing the head of the goddess of wisdom and patron of war, Athena.

Inside the library, the walls are generally smoothly plastered and painted chalk white. Some walls have murals on them painted during the 1900’s. The vaulted ceilings depict historical figures, all of which are painted and connected with symbolism. The leaded glass windows illuminate the reading rooms.

The rest of the building has monumental doorways with decorative frames and marble columns as well as vaulted ceilings and murals.