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The paper discusses the origins and the main features of Emilio Gabba’s familial library. It highlights the connection between his interests as a historian and the various books in the catalogue. The library itself was created in the 18th century by the Visconti, a family of notaries from Pavia, deeply connected with the cultural environment of the city and with its university. Among the most important books in this library, many works are written by historians and political thinkers, in addition to several legal texts. A few books underline the family’s interesting in Jansenism, which had spread to the university of Pavia, at the same time as the reforms wished by Empress Maria Teresa of Austria.