Richard Cumberland (1632-1718), Bishop of Peterborough, philosopher associated with the Cambridge Platonists, and friend of Samuel Pepys
Stamford [ Lincolnshire ]. 22 December 1687.
1p., 8vo. In bifolium. Aged and worn, and having received a careful professional repair. Addressed: 'For the Reverend Mr Isaac L at Mris Moor's house in Harborough'. Addressed to 'Deare Cousin'. Eighteen lines of text. He is forwarding another letter (not present), and is adding 'these few lines let you understand that I am safe returned from London and have recovered from that cold and illness that I got in my journey'. He invites him to Stamford for the Christmas period, which he hopes 'to passe more comfortably than I did my last'.
Laurence Binyon [ Robert Laurence Binyon ] (1869-1943), English poet and scholar, Keeper of the Department of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum ]
From the British Museum, London, on cancelled letterhead of the Athenaeum, Pall Mall. 25 July 1920.
2pp., 12mo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper, with thin strip of stub along one edge from previous mounting. He begins by apologising for having been 'so rude' in not answering the letter sooner. After explaining the cause, he continues: 'I fear I'm not much use for a society such as you are starting, because my life is so entirely without leisure. You see, I have only my evenings for doing my own work, & I am always about 3 years behind with the writing of the poems I have planned - to say nothing of the lectures & articles one has to write to eke out an income'.
Ofspring Blackall (1655-1716), Bishop of Exeter, religious controversialist [ The South Sea Bubble, 1711-1720 ]
Westminster. 18 February 1712 [ 1711 O.S. ].
1p., 8vo. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. Reads: 'Westminster Feb. 18. 1711/12. | Sr | I desire you will buy and accept five Hundred Pounds Stock in the Capitall Stock of the Company of Merchants of Great Britain trading to the South Seas for my Account and in my name; which will oblige | Sr | Yor. Affect. Brother & Servt | Ofsp. Exon'. Annotated in a nineteenth-century hand at bottom-left: 'Dr Ofspring Blackall.' At the time of writing the South Sea Company had only just been created. It would collapse spectacularly in 1720.
Josiah Burchett (c.1666-1746), Secretary of the Admiralty, clerk and servant to Samuel Pepys [ Sir Robert Rich (1648-1699) of Roos Hall, Suffolk; James Welwood (1652-1727), physician ]
Epsom. 26 August 1697.
2pp., 8vo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged, with seal cut away from second leaf, which carries a postmark and the address: 'For the Rt. Honoble. Sr. Robert Rich, one of the Lords of the Admiralty. At his house near ye Admty. Office. | Westminster'. Thirty-two lines of text.
Henry Goss Custard, organist of Liverpool Cathedral
On letterhead of 5 Canning Street, Liverpool. 2 March 1926.
3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged. He writes with evident pride regarding, beginning by explaining that the specification of the organ 'was originally drawn up by Mr. Ridley the nephew of the Donor, but it has been considerably modifiied by me since then'. When the building is finished, it is not intended to supplement the organ 'by another at the West End'.
George Rolleston (1829-1881), Linacre Professor of Zoology at the University of Oxford
Without place or date. [ Oxford, 1870s? ]
2pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly-aged, with traces of glue from mount on blank reverse. He will have his 'hands quite full up to the day before Christmas Day with Examinations', the 'nuisance' being 'terrific'. he would like 'a few days to prepare for your coming & to get the Long Barrow all into order for you'. He suggests 'three days or so after Christmas Day with its diverse distractions' as the best time 'for you to come here'. He will be 'all dazed otherwise', having to get 'a paper on the Cissbury arrivals out by Jan 1'.
Edward Falkener (1814-1896, pseud. 'E. F. O. Thurcastle'), architect and author [ Sir William Tite (1798-1873), architect and Member of Parliament; Sir John Soane's Museum ]
10 Carlisle Parade, Hastings. 5 January 1861.
4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, on lightly-aged paper. On two occasions, despite the urgings of his friends, he has declined to apply for 'the Curatorship at Sir John Soanes', but he has since 'thought my friends might be right, and that the appointment would afford means of study and relaxation'. He has been 'over worked lately', and is 'suffering from boils and nervous headaches, which came on the very day I had intended to leave for Paris and Berlin'.
Sir Ashton Lever (1729-1788) of Alkrington Hall, Rochdale, Lancashire, natural history collector [ The Great Siege of Gibraltar, 1779-1783 ]
'Alkrington' [ Alkrington Hall, Rochdale, Lancashire ]. 20 October 1782.
1p., landscape 8vo. On aged and worn paper, with a couple of light ink stains. A small cutting carrying a biography of Lever is laid down at bottom left. His 'intention relative to sending a Cargo of Potatoes to our brave friends at Gibraltar' has not met with the support he expected, so he is forced to 'give up the plan, the Subscription being no way adequate to the expence that would attend'. He asks Harrop to insert the list of subscribers in his newspaper, and to 'return those Gentlemen their Subscription with my best Compliments'.
Lord Grenville [ William Wyndham Grenville, Baron Grenville ] (1759-1834), Whig prime minister [ John Wilson Croker (1780-1857), Tory politician and writer ]
Dropmore. 27 May 1823.
3pp., 12mo. In good condition, lightly-aged, neatly cut out of a windowpane mount. A 'slight return' of his 'complaint' has disqualified him from all attention to business, or he would 'gladly have availed myself of the opportunity which Mr Croker's letter seemed to offer, to enter into some details upon the subject, which I should not be sorry to leave behind me - and I still hope to do so when health & strength return as I trust they will'.
Renn Dickson Hampden (1793-1868), Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford and Bishop of Hereford, subject of the Hampden Controversy of 1836 [ Richard Bentley (1794-1871), London publisher ]
Ewelme Rectory. 21 July 1846.
3pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition. Addressed to 'R. Bentley Esq'. Having explained that the delay in replying is due to his absence from Oxford during the vacation, he turns to Bentley's proposal. 'I am much flattered by your applying to me, under the high recommendation which you state, for the work in question. And I cannot but admire your spirit in desiring that a work of that kind should go forth to the world under your auspices.
James Atlay (1817-1894), Bishop of Hereford [ William Connor Magee (1821-1891), Archbishop of York ]
Oxton Hall, Tadcaster, on cancelled letterhead of The Palace, Hereford. 30 September 1892.
4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In good condition, lightly aged and worn. He begins by stating that, as he takes the Eagle newspaper, he has 'seen your poem & Bowling's version', before continuing: 'The only comfort that I can find in the smoling - excessive smoking - of the present day is that the Tobacco is less disagreeable and (I hope) less noxious than the weed of my youth'. He is not himself a smoker, 'but my boys smoke, to excess I think'.
George Isaac Huntingford (1748-1832), Warden of Winchester College, and successively Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Hereford
No place. 20 October 1823.
1p., 8vo. 23 lines of text. In fair condition, slightly aged and worn, with some repair with archival tape. Offering an interesting insight into everyday ecclesiastical management in Regency England. The letter begins: 'I cannot find, what I once sent to you as having been well educated, a printed paper. The purport of it was to shew the extreme Impropriety of laying a stress on the word "Us", in the sentence "Lord have mercy upon Us".
George Isaac Huntingford (1748-1832), Warden of Winchester College, and successively Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Hereford
'W. C. [ i.e. Winchester College ]'. 16 February 1818.
1p., 4to. In fair condition, on lightly aged and worn paper, with slight damage on removal from mount and traces of tape adhering. He has been referred to 'the Oldest Table of Fees' by 'Mr. Lane', and quotes information from the table given by Lane. He asks the recipient to 'search the Proper Office; send me a Copy of such Certificate; & of Any Proceedings had in consequence of it'.
General John Hope, 4th Earl of Hopetoun [ Lord Niddry ] (1765-1823), Scottish politician and British Army officer [ Robert Saunders Dundas, Viscount Melville ]
Hopetoun House. 23 May 1819.
3pp., 4to. In good condition, lightly-aged, on two leaves each neatly cut out of a windowpane mount. Headed 'Private'. Docketted by the recipient: 'Resp[ectin]g. the fitting up a part of the Old Palace at Linlithgow for the County Meeting'. He describes the applications he has made to the Lords of the Treasury and the Prince Regent, and a correspondence between the Keeper of the Palace and the Secretary of State. 'Your Lordship is aware that the Building is a complete Ruin; & of no use whatever, it its present state to any one [...]'.
Edward Daniel Clarke (1769-1822), antiquary, traveller, and Professor of Mineralogy in Cambridge University
Trumpington. 12 February 1814.
3pp., 4to. In good condition, lightly-aged, on two leaves each neatly cut out of a windowpane mount. He feels apprehensive at writing to a stranger, but feels compelled to do so, because of 'the greater anxiety I feel for the welfare of a young relation now beneath my roof, Mr. Edward Chappell, Lieutenant of the Rosamond'.
Anthony Ashley Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury (1621-1683), Whig statesman [ Sir Robert Long (1600-1673) ]
Whitehall. 22 November 1672.
1p., small 4to. Irregular shaped leaf of paper, aged and worn, laid down on a piece of paper 21 cm. square. Fourteen lines of text in a secretarial hand, regarding the payment of an annuity of £500 to 'David Walter - Esqr. one of the Groomes of his Mats. Bedchambr.' Signed at bottom right by Shaftesbury, and addressed at bottom left by the secretary 'To oure loving freind Sr. Robt. Long Bart. Audr. of the Receipt of ye. Excheqr.'
Davies Gilbert [ born Davies Giddy ] (1767-1839), mathematician, President of the Royal Society [ Sir Joseph Banks (1743-1820), naturalist ]
'East Bourn' [ Eastbourne ]. 19 July 1818.
2pp., 4to. In fair condition, on lightly aged paper, with slight damage to a few words along one edge due to removal from album. On his return to Eastbourne he has 'found a note announcing the Commission under the Great Seal for appointing Commissioners to inquire into the best mode of preventing the forgery of Bank Notes', and requiring his attendance the following day.
[ John Devoy (1842-1928), proprietor and editor of 'The Gaelic American', New York [ J. M. Sygne [ John Millington Synge ]; George Bernard Shaw; W. B. Yeats; Lady Gregory; The Abbey Theatre, Dublin ]
New York. 2 December 1911. [ 'Vol. VIII, No. 48, Whole No. 429'. ]
The front and back covers of the newspaper are present, forming a bifolium. A frail and scarce survival. Heavily-aged newsprint, chipped and worn, with the top and bottom halves of the front page separated along a horizontal fold line. The article on Synge's play covers the first two of the six columns on the front page, with a further quarter-column on the back page.
National Union of Journalists; National Council for Civil Liberties; Major G. Lloyd George; Dingle Foot; Compton Mackenzie; L. C. White; A. P. Herbert; Kingsley Martin; C. J. Bundock; R. Willis
Speeches made at the Conference [...] convened by the National Union of Journalists and the National Council for Civil Liberties and held at the Beaver Hall, in the City of London, on November 5th, 1938. [ Watford Printers Limited, Watford. ]
32pp., 8vo. Stapled in grey printed card wraps. In fair condition, on aged and worn paper, in like wraps, with rusted staples. Lloyd George, Foot and Herbert are all described on the title-page as MPs, White is named as 'Assistant General Secretary, Civil Service Clerical Association', Martin as 'Editor, "New Statesman and Nation"', Bundock as 'General Secretary, National Union of Journalists' and Willis as 'Secretary, London Trades Council'. A collection of impassioned and perceptive contributions.
John Masefield (1878-1867), Poet Laureate from 1930 to his death
Date and place not stated.
On 7 x 11 cm slip of paper, torn from the end of a letter. In fair condition, lightly aged, with minor staining to one corner. Reads, with top line slightly cropped: 'I may have more leisure. | Yours sincerely, | J. Masefield.'
Frank N. Jones, Director, Peabody Institute Library [ Peabody Institute of the City of Baltimore; John Carter [ John Waynflete Carter ] (1905-1975), diplomat and bookman ]
'An Exhibition on the History of Playing Cards, Peabody Institute Library, Baltimore. 1 November - 31 December 1960.
42pp., 8vo. Duplicated stapled typescript, with text on rectos only. Not illustrated. Introduction by Jones, in which he explains that 'the list is arranged chronologically under the country of origin, plus special types of cards as, for example, transformation, etc. A selected bibliography has been included for those who may wish to go into these matters more extensively.' A scholarly production, with 264 entries and four-page bibliography. Aged and worn, with printed card cover (on which a playing card has been laid down as part of design) detached and chipped.
Cyrus Townsend Brady (1861-1920), American author, adventure writer and screenwriter, a bitter opponent to women's suffrage
Brooklyn, New York. 23 October 1902.
On 6.5 x 11.5 cm piece of card, laid down on a slightly larger piece of paper. In good condition, lightly aged. Neatly written out and apparently sent in response to a request for an autograph. Reads: 'Yours Sincerely | Cyrus Townsend Brady | Brooklyn N.Y., | October 23rd., 1902'.
[ Queen Caroline of Brunswick (1768-1821), consort of King George IV ] [ Samuel Wells, Under Sheriff of the County of Cambridgeshire ]
[ Cambridgeshire, 1821. ]
The present item is the subject of a letter to The Times, 1 August 1821, from Samuel Wells, 'Late Under Sheriff of Cambridgeshire', in which it is quoted as having been drawn up at a 'public meeting of the County of Cambridgeshire [...] convened by the late High Sheriff, in consquence of a requisition presented to him for that purpose, which requisition was signed by several noblemen and magistrates, with 27 other proprietors of considerable estates within the county'. 2pp., 4to. On watermarked laid paper. In fair condition, lightly aged and worn.
[ Daniel A. Taylor, Chief Legal Counsel, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; the 1921 Trial of Sacco and Vanzetti; Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, Italian-American anarchists ]
Introduction by Daniel A. Taylor, Chief Legal Counsel, The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Executive Department, State House, Boston, dated 13 July 1977.
 + 38pp., 4to. Stapled in brown printed wraps. In good condition, lightly aged and worn. In his introduction Taylor explains: 'The accompanying Report has been prepared under the auspices of the Office of the Governor's Legal Counsel in response to your questions: first, as to whether there are substantial grounds for believing - at least in light of the criminal justice standards of today - that Sacco and Vanzetti were unfairly convicted and executed, and, second, if so, what action can now appropriately be taken.
[ Hugh Cecil (1857-1944), 5th Earl of Lonsdale; Library of Lowther Castle, Penrith; Ham House Library, Surrey; William Tollemache (1859-1935), 9th Earl of Dysart; Sotheby's, London auctioneers ]
Sotheby & Co.,34 & 35 New Bond Street, London.
All four catalogues are 4to, and in good condition, on lightly-aged paper, in their original uniform green printed wraps. The four have been bound together in lightly-worn sturdy green buckram, with the following in gilt on spine: 'Sale Catalogues 1937-38 | Lowther Castle Library with Psalter | Ham House Library'. All four are priced in light pencil. ONE: 'Catalogue of a Selected Portion of the Valuable Library at Lowther Castle, Penrith. Sold by Order of the Rt. Honourable Hugh Cecil Earl of Lonsdale K.G., G. C.V.O.
Nicholas Robilliard; Thomas Whitmore [ London Greek Committee; Greek War of Independence ]
Both Letters dated 8 December 1825. Robilliard's letter without place; Whitmore's note from the Custom House [ London ].
The subject is clearly the Karteria, the first steam-powered warship to see active service. The Karteria was built in 1825 for the Greek insurgentsd by Daniel Brent Shipwrights in the Greenland South Dockyard, Rotherhithe, London. It was financed mainly from the proceeds of the 2nd Greek Loan raised by the London Philhellenic Committee, but also from the private funds of Captain Frank Abney Hastings. Both items in good condition, on lightly-aged paper. ONE: Robilliard to 'Thos Whitmore Esq | Secretary &c &c &c'. 1p., 4to. Headed 'Confidential'. Signed 'Nis Robilliard'.
Sir Francis William Maclean (1844-1913), Chief Justice of Bengal, 1896-1909, Vice-Chancellor of University of Calcutta,1898-1900 [ Henry Gurney (1833-1913), judge; the Garrick Club, London ]
Simla [ on cancelled letterhead of the High Court of Calcutta ]. 19 April 1897.
4pp., 4to. In fair condition, on lightly aged and worn paper. In a postscript Maclean describes the letter as a 'ragged & untidy scrawl', 'intended purely for the private ear of old Garrick friends: not for publication in the P[all]. M[all]. G[azette].' Maclean opens the letter with an apology for the late reply to the recipient's previous letter, before turning to Maclean's privileged life in India: 'It is a far cry from here to the Garrick, & yet I am, in spirit & in thought, often with you all.
Fannie Ratchford, Rare Books Librarian of the University of Texas (Fannie Elizabeth Ratchford).
No imprint [ Austin, Texas, 1946 ]
71pp., cr.8vo, printed wrappers, edges sunned and sl worn, good condition. Inscribed by author, front cover, "From Fannie Ratchford", with a note, also on the front cover, "Dear Mr. Muir, | Keep this if you have not got it - otherwise throw it away | Esher" [Brett, Oliver Sylvain Baliol (1881-1965) 3rd Viscount Esher, Book-Collector ]. Also, inside front cover, Muir's simple bookplate. Originally published in the Library Chronicle of the University of Texas, vol. I, no. 4, 1945 and vol. II, no. 1, 1946. A postscript has been added.