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Athenaeus may be referring to the collection of books that Aristotle had amassed at his school in Athens, which Philadelphus was able to purchase when his former tutor, Straton, was head of the Lyceum.

Strabo’s account may be dealing with the personal writings that Aristotle had bequeathed to his successors as heads of the Lyceum, until they were confiscated by Sulla.

He required his companions, generals, and scholars to report to him in detail on regions previously unmapped and uncharted.

Libraries and archives were known to many ancient civilizations in Egypt, Mesopotamia, Syria, Asia Minor, and Greece, but the earliest such institutions were of a local and regional nature, primarily concerned with the conservation of their own particular traditions and heritage.

The idea of a universal library, like that of Alexandria, arose only after the Greek mind had begun to envisage and encompass a larger worldview.

The time was pregnant with a new spirit that engendered a renaissance of human culture.

It was in that atmosphere that the great library and Mouseion saw the light of day in Alexandria.

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