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Displaying 51 - 60 of 1935
Author: Sir Charles Lyell (1797-1875)
Item date: 1818-1875
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £20,000
Item cost: £966,000
Institution: Edinburgh University Library
Town/City: Edinburgh

Sir Charles Lyell (1797-1875) is one of the most influential scientists of the 19th century and for geology one of the most distinguished and important figures of all time. Lyell’s development of geology into a professional and popular science established his reputation at home and overseas; a status boosted by his constant travels throughout Britain, Europe and North America. Lyell was influential through his activity with learned societies and bodies, public lectures and especially his very popular books.

Covering the period 1818 to 1875, these 294 notebooks provide a remarkable insight not only into one of the leading 19th-century earth scientists and the developing professional discipline of geology, but also a fascinating insight into his life and times. Lyell was deeply interested in, and therefore took extensive notes on, a whole range of issues including politics, women in science, university reform and slavery in the United States.

Author: John Cowley
Item date: 1758
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £5,000
Item cost: £9,500
Institution: University College London
Town/City: London

A rare edition of Euclid’s Elements that quite literally stands out from other publications of the text: John Cowley’s Appendix to Euclid’s Elements (1758). His innovative approach enabled readers to fold pop-out three-dimensional figures while they studied Euclid’s text.

Dating from around 300 BC, Euclid’s Elements of Geometry became the most influential mathematical text ever written. It remained a standard work until the 19th century, and its influence on mathematics, modern science and the reception of classical philosophy cannot be overestimated. The Elements has also assumed a central position in printing history from the very beginning. It was one of the earliest mathematical works to be printed, and it is one of the most extensively printed texts ever written, with the number of known editions second only to the Bible.

John Cowley was a leading mathematician of the 18th century. He had a particular interest in how to make Euclidean geometry easier to understand for students. Cowley’s 1758 edition of the sections of the Elements dedicated to solid figures presented an important innovation in the visual representation of Euclid’s figures. It includes 42 diagrams printed on pasteboard, designed to be folded into three-dimensional pop-up figures by the reader.

Author: D H Lawrence
Item date: 1960
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £10,000 (B. H. Breslauer Foundation Fund).
Item cost: £56,250
Institution: Bristol University Library
Town/City: Bristol
County: Avon

This worn Penguin paperback provides a fascinating insight into legal and publishing history in this country. It paved the way for social reform far beyond D. H. Lawrence’s colourful text.

A test case of the Obscene Publications Act 1959, initiated by Penguin Books, was presided over by Mr Justice Byrne in 1960. Assisted by his wife, Byrne used this annotated copy of the novel together with page references and further notes made during the trial. The role of Mrs Byrne, including crafting a small damask bag to discreetly transport the book to court, provides a glimpse of life in the 1950s.

The Old Bailey trial of Regina v. Penguin Books Ltd. found that the book was not obscene, thus marking the end of the conservative 1950s. Scholars suggest this outcome led to a new liberal and permissive society and the modernisation of legalisation for homosexuality, abortion, the death penalty and divorce in the 1960s and beyond.

Author: John Stuart Mill
Item date: 1836-1866
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £7,500
Item cost: £13,000
Institution: Somerville College
Town/City: Oxford
County: Oxfordshire

Somerville College is the home of John Stuart Mill’s London library, comprising around 1,700 volumes belonging to him and his father, James Mill. The volumes contain many instances of their verbal and non-verbal marginalia and following the launch of a campaign in 2015 to publicise, preserve and digitise the collection, there has been much research interest in the books and marginalia. In recent years the college has been enhancing the collection through the acquisition of hitherto unpublished letters written by John Stuart Mill. In 2019 an opportunity arose to acquire six such items, plus a particularly interesting previously-published letter. Thanks to the Friends of the National Libraries and private donors we were able to secure all of these items, ensuring they would be available for Mill researchers for the future.

Item date: 1608 – 1797
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £7,500 [B H Breslauer Foundation Fund]
Item cost: £20,000
Institution: South West Heritage Trust
Town/City: Taunton
County: Somerset

The South West Heritage Trust is grateful for the support of the Friends of the National Libraries which has enabled us to reunite these papers with the main Helyar archive which is held at the Somerset Heritage Centre. The papers were mounted, in a broadly chronological order, in three folio volumes by Theodora Helyar during the 19th century.

The collection includes correspondence relating to the purchase of Coker Court in 1616 and the lease of Staverton Manor, Devon, by Archdeacon Helyar in the 1630s, with correspondence from the Archbishop of Canterbury, William Laud.

Of particular significance are papers relating to the 17th century political affairs in the West Country.

The papers form an integral part of the wider Helyar collection, and we are delighted that researchers will now be able to gain a more complete picture of the role of the Helyar family in West Country politics and governance during the turbulent period of the 17th century, and of their interests abroad, particularly in the West Indies.

Author: Gilbert Goudie (1843-1918).
Item date: 1916-17
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £1,000
Item cost: £1,500
Institution: Shetland Museum and Archives
Town/City: Lerwick

During the final 18 years of his life, Gilbert Goudie (1843-1918), a banker in Edinburgh and native of Shetland, composed a series of autobiographical journals, covering his whole life to date. In 2016 the Shetland Archives acquired the series, and the diaries on which they were based, from Goudie’s descendants.

Goudie was a careful chronicler of his career, from his humble origins in Shetland, his emigration to Edinburgh when he was ten, his education, his professional life and his scholarly interests: he wrote 19 important papers on the antiquities of Shetland, collected in his Antiquities of Shetland (1904).

There was one gap in the journal series, however: the final volume, covering the years 1916-17. It recently came to light – its previous owner’s father-in-law had bought it in the 1930s in Brighton – and has now been acquired for the Shetland Archives with the help of a generous grant from the Friends of the National Libraries.

Author: Natalia Goncharova
Item date: 1912
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £8,947
Item cost: £18,947
Institution: Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Town/City: Edinburgh

On 18th May 2019, a rare copy of the seminal publication Mirskontsa [Worldbackwards] was offered at auction at Nosbüsch & Stucke auction house in Berlin. Published in Moscow in November 1912 by G.L. Kuz’min and S.D.

Author: Charles Hubert Hastings Parry
Item date: 1873
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £2,063 [B. H. Breslauer Foundation Fund]
Item cost: £6,875
Institution: Royal College of Music
Town/City: London

The Royal College of Music has a very close link to Sir Hubert Parry. He was appointed to teach at the college at its foundation in 1882 and in 1895 he succeeded Sir George Grove as our second Director. On his death in 1918 Emily Daymond, his assistant, arranged for the bulk of his music manuscripts to be split between the Royal College of Music and Oxford University (his alma mater). In addition to approximately 50% of his manuscripts the Royal College of Music also holds extensive Parry archival material including his lecture books, letters and other writing relating to his time at the college.

Manuscripts of songs are underrepresented in the collection, so this acquisition goes some way to rectify this.

Item date: 18th and 19th centuries
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £4,330
Item cost: £8,330
Institution: Northumberland Archives Service
Town/City: Morpeth
County: Northumberland

Dickson, Archer & Thorp, solicitors, of Alnwick, Northumberland. The practice was established in the late 18th century and continued until the death of the last managing partner in 2005. At this point there existed an unbroken series of business records and clients’ papers dating back to its establishment, making the collection a unique resource. The collection is significant in that we are unaware of the mass survival of records of another extant solicitor’s collection that charts the history of a 200 year-old practice from establishment to closure; the wide client base of the practice – from probate cases of families of relatively modest means to dealing with the business of many county families and the Duke of Northumberland, and the involvement of practice partners in the governance of the county and more locally.

Author: George Murray Levick (1876-1956),
Item date: Created during the British Antarctic Expedition (Terra Nova Expedition) of 1910-13
Date acquired: 2019
Grant Value: £10,000
Item cost: £35,000
Institution: Natural History Museum
Town/City: London

George Murray Levick served as surgeon and zoologist on the Terra Nova Expedition led by Robert Falcon Scott which saw Levick spending the austral summer of 1911-12 at Cape Adare where he studied an Adélie penguin rookery. The largest Adélie penguin colony in the world, Levick was the first person to observe the entire breeding cycle of this bird species.

The notebooks also contain observations of penguin behaviour that at the time were deemed too indecent for publication, leading Levick to write some passages of text in the first notebook in Greek. In order to preserve decency, Levick’s paper based on his observations titled The sexual habits of the Adélie penguin was not included in the official Scott expedition reports of 1915.