Top 10+ oldest books in the world

The term “Ancient Book” appeared in the second half of the 19th century; often confused with “rare books”, “old books”. The SC value is determined by the assessment method in terms of: ancient language, content of the reflected era (ancient, medieval, and modern books), materials used, printing method… So do you know which is the oldest book? Find out with me now!

Madrid Codex

Top 10+ oldest books in the world
Madrid Codex – Top 10+ oldest books in the world

At the top of this strong list is undoubtedly the Madrid Codex. This book was first discovered in 1860 in Spain. In addition to the Madrid Codex, this book is also known as the Tro-Cortesianus Codex-. The content of this book is about the Maya civilization – pre-Columbian period, dating from about 900-1521 AD. As of this, its lifespan has been 494 years.

This book is written in Yucatecan – a group of Mayan languages that includes Yucatec, Itza, Lacandon, and Mopan. Therefore, many paleontologists predict that it was published in Yucatán. To admire this book, you can go to the Museum of the Americas in Madrid, Spain.

The Gutenberg Bible

The Gutenberg Bible – Top 10+ oldest books in the world

This book is recognized by Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest mechanically printed book. It was identified as printed by Johannes Gutenberg, Mainz, Germany. The first prints were printed in 1454-1455 AD. Of the 48 surviving originals, 21 are complete. Currently, this bible is kept at the New York Public Library, the first to come to the United States. The life expectancy of this book is estimated at 559 years.

Celtic Psalter

Top 10+ oldest books in the world
Celtic Psalter – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

This is known as the Kells Gospel of Scotland. Some believe that the book was written in the 11th century AD. To date, it is 938 years old. Now, to admire this little hymn, you can visit the display at the University of Edinburgh.

Diamond Sūtra

Diamond Sūtra – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

In this ranking, there are bibles, and of course indispensable Buddhist scriptures. Diamond Sūtra is considered the oldest surviving scripture in the world. The lifespan of this book is up to 1145 years old. This Buddhist scripture was first found in a small cave in China. It is made from a piece of gray leather wrapped around a wooden pole and is written in Chinese.


Top 10+ oldest books in the world
Top 10+ oldest books in the world – Siddur

Coming in at No. 5 on this list is Siddu – a Jewish prayer book first discovered in 2013. Many people think that this book was around 840 AD. Estimated to be 1173 years old now. The book was made of parchment and was written in the Babylonian language.

Kells Gospel – Top 10 oldest books in the world

Kells Gospel – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

This Gospel is handwritten with colorful patterns, in Latin, containing the four Gospels of the New Testament. It is widely assumed that it was written by a Celtic monk around 800 AD. Calculated den9861 now its age has been 1213 years old. To admire this “artifact”, you can visit the gallery of Trinity College Library in Dublin, Ireland.

The Gospel of Saint Cuthbert


Top 10+ oldest books in the world
The Gospel of Saint Cuthbert – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

The Gospel of Saint Cuthbert is the oldest surviving intact book in Europe, acquired by the British Library in 2012 for £9 million, as part of a fundraising campaign. The book was buried with Saint Cuthbert, an early English Christian leader, on the island of Lindisfarne, off Northumberland, around AD 698.

The remnant from the Viking conquests, the book was moved to Durham church because it was nearly destroyed by Viking bandits. The book was once again discovered in 1104 AD, with an inscription added inside the cover. Its lifespan is estimated at 1315 years.

Nag Hammadi Library

It is believed to be one of the oldest surviving book collections – 13 leather-bound papyrus codes, buried in a sealed jar, by a man living in the town of Nag Hammadi, Upper Egypt. , discovered in 1945.

The books contain excerpts from the Gnostic scriptures, dating from around the first half of the 4th century AD. These Coptic ciphers are thought to have been copied from Greek. These Nag Hammadi ciphers can now be found at the Coptic Museum in Cairo, Egypt. Estimated life expectancy: 1693 years.

Pyrgi Gold Plates – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

Top 10+ oldest books in the world
Pyrgi Gold Plates – Top 10+ Oldest Books in the world

Found in 1964 during excavations at a shrine at ancient Pyrgi, Italy, these three gold plates date back to 500 BC. Because there are holes around the edges of these three gold plates, scholars believe that they were once tied together.

Two are written in the Etruscan language, one in the Phoenician language, with a dedication by King Thefarie Velianas to Astarte, the Phoenician water goddess. These gold plates are currently on display at the National Etruscan Museum in Rome, Italy. Estimated life expectancy: 2513 years

Etruscan Gold Book

Etruscan Gold Book – Top 10 oldest books in the world

The Etruscan Yellow Book is believed to be the world’s oldest multi-page book, dating back to around 660 BC. The book was found 70 years ago while digging a canal on the Struma River in Bulgaria. The book is made of six 24-carat gold plates and is bound together with rings. The plates are written in Etruscan script, with illustrations of a horse, horseman, a mermaid, a harp, and soldiers.

The book was donated by an anonymous 87-year-old owner to the National Museum of Bulgarian History in Sofia. The Etruscans were an ancient people, who migrated from Lydia – in present-day Turkey – to central Italy about 3 thousand years ago. Estimated life expectancy: 2673 years

Ancient books from thousands of generations have always been of great value to all of us and that cannot be denied. Which book do you like? What topic would you like us to write about? Don’t forget to leave a comment!

Update: 12/2022

By Eryk Wu Address: 3999 Pine Forest Hollow Trail Houston, TX 77084 Phone: +12813473007 Email: Website:

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