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The dais in the dome

wooden dais with seated library attendant
28 November 2019

The ornate wooden dais centred under the dome in the La Trobe Reading Room was once an elevated seating area for Library attendants.

While simultaneously stamping books, the attendant on watch would also keep a careful ear out for anybody speaking too loudly and disturbing the peace.

In fact, the Domed Reading Room's radiating desks were inspired by a design used by penal institutions, but with the librarian rather than a warden maintaining order.

Read more on our Such was life blog