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Public libraries in Germany are called the "Stadtbibliothek", "Städtische Leihbücherei", or "Staatsbibliothek". These libraries have a large selection of German literature, professional journals, newspapers and magazines. Many libraries also have a foreign language selection. Libraries often have a selection of videotapes, music CD’s and learning programmes for computers. Books, videotapes and CD’s can be borrowed free of charge once you have a yearly membership card. A fee must be paid to receive this library card and a valid identification card or passport is needed. Books are borrowed for a fixed loan period ("Ausleihfrist"). You should not exceed this time limit as you have to pay a fine if the borrowed items are not brought back in time.

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