There was certainly a collection of books at Lincoln Cathedral in the twelfth century, and its origins were perhaps earlier still; but little interest seems to have been taken in building up the library until the second half of the seventeenth century, with the appointment in 1660 of the bibliophile Michael Honywood, a Fellow of Christ's College, Cambridge, as Dean. The present Wren Library's collection of some 8,000 printed books is based largely on his private library, bequeathed to the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln on his death in 1681. Much of Honywood's library was put together during seventeen years of voluntary exile in the Low Countries from 1643. It is consequently rich in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century continental literature, including rare Italian plays, European pamphlets and broadsides interpreting the English political situation, a collection of Dutch ballads, and many religious books and tracts. The splendid English collection includes 1600 STC items, and 2,650 printed between 1641 and 1700, over 100 of which are not recorded in Wing. In addition there are some 100 incunables.
This complete catalogue of books printed before 1801 is the first since 1859, and offers the detail and precision required by modern scholars, bibliographers and libraries. Titles are given at some length to indicate subject coverage, and format, pagination, and details of illustrations are recorded. The catalogue notes which books belonged to Honywood, whose importance as a collector is thus established. A set of concordances keyed to the main entries covers STC, Wing, Adams, and Goff.
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(300mm x 220mm x 32mm)
Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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