Realia (library science)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

In library classification systems, the term realia refers to three-dimensional objects from real life such as coins, tools, and textiles, that do not easily fit into the orderly categories of printed material. They can be either man-made (artifacts, tools, utensils, etc.) or naturally occurring (specimens, samples, etc.), usually borrowed, purchased, or received as donation by a teacher, library, or museum for use in classroom instruction or in exhibits. Archival and manuscript collections often receive items of memorabilia such as badges, emblems, insignias, jewelry, leather goods, needlework, etc., in connection with gifts of personal papers. Most government or institutional archives reject gifts of non-documentary objects unless they have a documentary value. When accepting large bequests of mixed objects they normally have the donors sign legal documents giving permission to the archive to destroy, exchange, sell or dispose in any way those objects which, according to the best judgement of the archivist, are not manuscripts (which can include typescripts or printouts) or are not immediately useful for understanding the manuscripts.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Realia (library science)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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