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Percy Stafford Allen (1869-1933),
Erasmus scholar, President of Corpus Christi College (1924), and Mrs H
M Allen, his widow. Bequeathed by Mrs Allen in accordance with the wishes
of her husband, in 1953. A collection comprising original editions of the
works of Erasmus, and a comprehensive working library of c2,000 items relating
to Erasmus, built up by the Allens in the course of editing the Opus epistolarum.
The books date from the 16th-20th cent, with a wide
variety of places of publication, and include a collection of offprints
Antiq. [Antiquiora] A shelfmark used between 1883 and 1936 for antiquarian accessions, with subdivision by size, place of printing and date. c4,000 v of the 16th-18th cent.
Arch. [Archivium] Certain categories of books of all periods which, on account of their rarity, value, very small size etc, would be unsuitably placed in the current classification. Sections include: over 800 very rare and valuable books printed in England or printed in English abroad; over 250 foreign books; over 200 fine examples of modern (including 18th cent) printing, and books printed in very limited editions; c150 books judged to be pornographic but possessing literary merit; c150 examples of early English printing; over 40 examples of important association copies and books with ms. notes; over 110 albums and volumes containing original photographs.
Arch.Antiq. 250 books of the 18th and 19th cent.
Arch.Jur. 280 v of the 16th-18th cent, including editions of Horace.
Arch.Nat. Hist. c370 works of natural history of the 18th and 19th cent.
Arch.Num. Over 1,200 works on numismatics, mainly 18th and 19th cent.
Arch.Seld. c180 works of the 17th-19th cent, and including Spanish books.
Arch.SIGMA 270 works, mainly Spanish, of the 16th-18th cent.
Art. [Artes] One part of the original Bodleian four-part classification by faculty or subject. Included mathematics, history, philosophy and literature. In use in various forms 1602-1789, and less frequently until c1840. In later years the distribution by faculty began to be disregarded and books were added where there was space on the shelves. Over 8,000 v of the 16th-early 19th cent.
Arts. Over 500 folios and large quartos on arts subjects received among the new books between 1861 and 1883.
AS. (an arbitrary symbol, formed by analogy with BS.) Used between 1805 and 1820 as a shelfmark for the smaller volumes in quarto. 540 v, some containing several works, of the late-18th and early-19th cent, English and foreign, and on all subjects.
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Elias Ashmole (1617-92), antiquary, founder of the Ashmolean Museum, to which he presented his collections in 1677. The Visitors of the Ashmolean offered all the mss and printed books to the Bodleian in 1858, where they arrived in 1860. The Ashmole collection is in two sequences [MS.] Ashmole 1-1836, containing c1,100 printed books as well as mss, and Ashmole A-H, consisting of 350 printed books. Ashmole 1549-1836 and Ashmole A-H are accessions to Ashmole’s original collection from the libraries of John Aubrey (1626-97), Edward Lhuyd (1660-1709), and Martin Lister (1638-1712), and from the University chemical library founded in 1683. Most of Lister’s books are in the Bodleian collection shelfmarked ‘Lister’ (qv). The printed books (almost 900 in number) fall into two main categories: (a) a collection of contemporary pamphlets, dealing in the main with English political and theological controversy, including Civil War tracts, poems, sermons, newspapers and book catalogues, all collected by Ashmole between 1679 and 1690; (b) a library of astrology, astronomy and kindred topics, including prognostications, ephemerides or astronomical calendars, and a set of almanacs for the years 1571-1690 which, in part duplicates, in part supplements, the more extensive collection of almanacs acquired by gift from Richard Rawlinson, extending from 1607-1747. c146 of Ashmole’s volumes contain the signature of William Lilly (Merlinus Anglicus, 1602-81). Ashmole’s books are bound for the most part, in unornamented brown calf, bearing only Ashmole’s arms in gilt.
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Thomas Barlow (1607-91), Bodley’s Librarian (1653-60), Provost of The Queen’s College (1657), Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity (1660), Bishop of Lincoln (1675), bequeathed 54 manuscripts and those books in his library not already in the Bodleian (others went to The Queen’s College). The quarto and octavo printed books, particularly rich in tracts and pamphlets of the reign of Charles I and of the Civil Wars and Interregnum and in early theology, many with Barlow’s annotations, are kept under the shelfmark Linc. [Lincolniensis]. These tracts for the times (political, theological, philosophical) were often anonymous, and many of their authors have been identified on Barlow’s testimony.(Some later volumes, not Barlow’s, have been added to Linc., particularly during the 18th cent. making a total of c.6,000 v.) The folio volumes from Barlow’s library, not numerous, are dispersed amongst other folio volumes.
See also Auct.
William John Birkbeck (1859-1916), theologian and liturgical scholar, who worked for the union of the Anglican and Orthodox Churches. Bequeathed to Magdalen College, and deposited in the Bodleian in 1920, c300 historical and theological works, mostly of the 19th cent in Slavonic languages.
Sir George Bowyer 7th Bart (1811-83), lawyer, presented during the years 1838-43,78 printed volumes and 4 mss of the statutes of Italian cities, chiefly of the 17th and 18th cent. He had, in 1838, published his Dissertation on the statutes of the cities of Italy.
Broxbourne A collection presented in 1978 through the Friends of the National Libraries by Mr John Ehrman (1920 - ) in memory of his father, Albert Ehrman (1890 - 1969), who made the collection. It contains over 4,000 items, and includes over 100 mss, and of the printed books, 140 are incunabula (including many rare or unique single sheets); 104 are STC items; 664 were printed in the 16th cent and 422 in the 17th cent. The collection divides into three sections: (a) c2,000 examples of bindings from the 12th-20th cent, and from many countries. There is an especially strong group of blind-stamped 16th cent specimens, and examples of the work of some of the finest contemporary British and French binders. Described as one of the three great English 20th cent collections of bookbindings by Mr H M Nixon who, in his Broxbourne Library: styles and designs of bookbindings from the twelfth to the twentieth century, London, 1956, describes a representative selection of the most notable examples from each century; (b) The remarkable collection of book sale catalogues and material for book trade history used for, and listed in, G Pollard and A Ehrman, The distribution of books by Catalogue to 1800, Roxburghe Club, 1965. 347 items are there described, and there are c50 additions. They include the catalogues of printers, publishers, booksellers, auctioneers and libraries. Most of the countries of Europe are represented, and a wide range of book trade practices are illustrated; (c) A binding and printing history reference collection.
With indexes of provenances and of types of bindings by country and by binder.
The type specimens and related material, comprising books of typographical importance, excellence or curiosity, and works of reference, previously part of the Broxbourne Library, are now in Cambridge University Library.
Ingram Bywater (1840-1914), Fellow of Exeter College 1863, Sub-Librarian, Bodleian Library 1879, Regius Professor of Greek 1893-1908, bequeathed c4,000 v, listed in the privately printed Elenchus vetustiorum apud* * [I Bywater] hospitantium, 1911 and in an interleaved copy of acquisitions to his library from 1911 to his death. Bywater chose his books to illustrate the history of classical learning from Bessarion down to the immediate successors of Scaliger and Casaubon, and insisted on fine condition. The collection contains the names of the great, and many of the obscurer, European humanists of the 16th and early-17th cent. Aristotle and his commentators are well represented. c50 books have ms marginalia by scholars, near 200 are autographed, and c50 bear the arms of De Thou on their bindings. Most of the books are pre 1650, including c150 incunabula (31 of them Greek), and over 1,100 books (459 of them Greek) were printed in the first half of the 16th cent, a third of these by Paris presses. In addition the Library acquired some 64 vols. of ms. material, including Bywater’s correspondence with eminent European scholars.
Miriam Robinette (‘Robin’) Tomkinson (1916 - 86), a classicist and book collector, presented to the Bodleian in December 1984 a group of fine printed books, the majority editions of classical texts, some with interesting provenances and in fine bindings, and on her death the Library was able to select from her remaining books a further thirty-seven printed items, reflecting as well as her love for early printed classical texts, her affection for birds, her wide reading, and pride in her extensive and cultured ancestry (Ingram Bywater was her great-great-uncle by marriage).
John Waynflete Carter (1905-75) The collection purchased in 1951 from John Carter and added to from time to time, consists of over 350 v ranging in date from 1702 to the present day, and illustrates the history of publishers’ binding during the 19th cent. Most of the books are bound in cloth, though others are bound in silk, plush, wood and even metal, some of the gift-book type being elaborate and ornate.
Card cat under author, with descriptions of the bindings, an index of the binders’ names (when known), and a selective subject index. Carter later presented the file of his rubbings and notes compiled in the preparation of his books Binding variants in English publishing 1820-1900 (1932) and More binding variants (1938).
Simon J Castello, a Director of Allied Provincial Securities, is donating his collection of the work of Arthur Rackham (1869-1939), one of the greatest English book illustrators, including signed, limited editions, some with original artwork.
See also [Oxford University Press collection of type specimens]; [Printer’s library].
Nathaniel Crynes (1688-1745) Fellow of St John’s College and Superior Bedel of Arts (1716), bequeathed to the Bodleian all such books out of his own collections as the Library did not already possess. 968 v in octavo and smaller sizes, with a few quartos, dating from the 16th-18th cent, many very rare, were kept by the Bodleian. The Crynes collection has a wide range of historical material which supplemented the Bodleian collections in a significant way: Crynes, in addition to much rare English work, collected particularly those 16th c. octavo European editions which had been overlooked in favour of the larger folio volumes preferred by Bodley himself.The rest of his books went to St John’s College, and some to Balliol College.