[ Henry Wellesley, Principal of New Inn Hall, Oxford, and art connoisseur. ] Two Autograph Letters Signed (both 'H Wellesley') to Major R. Guthrie Macgregor, praising in fulsome terms his translations from the Greek Anthology.

Author: 
Henry Wellesley (1794-1866), Principal of New Inn Hall, Oxford, curator of Bodleian Library, Ashmolean Museum and Taylor Institute and art connoisseur [ Major Robert Guthrie Macgregor ]
Publication details: 
Both from New Inn Hall, Oxford. 19 September 1855 and 27 October 1864.
£50.00
SKU: 20569

Each letter 3pp., 12mo, and each on a bifolium. Both in fair condition, lightly aged and worn. ONE (19 September 1855): This first letter relates to the copy of Macgregor's 'Specimens of the Greek Anthology' (privately printed, [1855]) now in the British Library, 'With an autograph letter from the Translator to Dr. Wellesley; and a Critique upon the work, by the latter, also in MS.' In the present letter Wellesley writes that he has 'read them with the greatest pleasure. They convey the spirit and sense of the original in a way not only agreeable to the general reader, but to the scholar, and in language of great poetical beauty. No one who did not possess a very fine perception of their varied charm could have so well preserved their truly Greek character in a modern dress.' Macgregor's translations have provided a 'treat' to 'one who has travelled the same road', and he hopes he will allow them to be published, 'as a foretaste of what they precede in a more ample form. TWO (27 October 1864): This second letter concerns Macgregor's 'Greek Anthology, with Notes critical and explanatory', published by Nissen and Parker [1864]. Wellesley acknowledges receipt, and state4s that he will 'place the volume, as you desire, in the Library of New Inn Hall. They cannot but be admired by all who, like myself, feel an interest in the Greek Originals, and delight to see their spirit re-produced in any of the living languages. I, for one, shall be glad to have your elegant versions at hand, in order to go over the collection again, after many years, with renewed relish.' He ends with renewed thanks for 'this very handsome and valuable gift'. See Wellesley's entry in the Oxford DNB. The British Museum provides the following biography: 'Son of Marquess Richard Wellesley and Hyacinth Roland. Principal of New Inn Hall, Oxford, curator of the Bodleian Library, curator of Ashmolean Museum and Taylor Institute. Collector of old master drawings, and of topographical and historical prints, manuscripts and coins. See Lugt, Marques, for a series of sales between 1838 and 1866. His Renaissance Medals were sold at Sotheby's 31 May and 1 June 1866. The Italian prints were sold at Sotheby's on 29 June 1858 and 2 June 1860; the rest of the old master prints in Paris on 13 February 1865 (plus the French drawings). The main drawings sale was at Sotheby's, 25 June 1866 (continuing into July); the BM also purchased at the sale of his library on 12-16 November 1866.'