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10. Greek and Latin Classics; Grammars
This very valuable body of Grecian and Roman literature could not have in. cluded fewer than 2400 volumes and among these, almost every work of rarity and excellence. In the article of Cicero' alone, there were 115 volumes printed in the fifteenth century*: every subsequent edition of that and other authors, which was then distinguished for its accuracy or erudition, may also, I believe, be discovered in the catalogue. Every body knows the sumptuous manner in which the Harleian copies were bound,
* It is said, and with great justice, in a note to the çatalogue, that the above was the most complete collection of the various editions of Tully's separate pieces before the year 1500, that had ever before been exhibited to the view of the public.'
Since Lord Oxford's time the multiplicity of an. tjent classical works published abroad and in this country, have very much contributed to increase col lections of this kind.
11. Books printed on Vellum. In this interesting department of typography there were about 220 volumes —upwards of 70 in folio, 40 in quarto, and 100 in octavo. Of the former the most curious and rare articles, were the Mentz* Bible of 1462, 2 vols. and the Travels of Breydenbachus t, printed at
* It is remarked in the prefatory observations to the books printed on vellum, that a paper copy of this famous bible is very rarely to be met with. And yet I recollect to have seen in Lord Spencer's library, a bible, printed on paper of a much earlier date, which seems to be described in Mr. Edwards's catalogue of 1796, p. 1. His majesty has a copy of the above Mentz Bible, of which the Testament only is on vellum. See an imperfect paper copy of the first vol. in the Pinelli catalogue, No. 5035. There is a fine perfect vellum copy of it in Lord Spencer's library, and in the Cracherode collection--the latter formerly belonged to Lamoignon.
+ • This book is an uncommon object of curiosity, as it is perhaps the first book of travels that was ever printed, and is adorned with maps and pictures very remarkable. The view of Venice is more than five feet long, and the map of the Holy Land more than three; there are views of many other cities. It is
Mentz in 1486. Among the quartos was Crowley's edition (1550) of the Visions of Pierce Plowman, which copy has, I believe, escaped Warton and Bishop Percy. The octavos were chiefly • Heures a l'usage,' so common at the beginning of the 16th century: but, if the catalogue be correctly published, there appears to have been one of these books printed at Paris as early as the year 1466, * with extremely beautiful cuts.' See the Harl. Cat. vol. ij. No. 18,406. Now if this were true, it would make known a curious fact in Parisian typographyfor the usually received opinion among bibliographers is, that no printed book appeared in France before the year 1467 when the art was first introduced at Tours; and none at Paris before 1469-70—when Crantz* and Friburger were engaged to print there. GU printed in the Gothic character. See Bibl. Harl, vol. iii. No. 3213.
12. English Poetry, Romances, and
There could not have been fewer than 900 volumes in this amusing department; and among them some editions of the rarest occurrence. Every thing printed by Caxton on these subjects was in the collection—and in respect to other curious works, it will be sufficient only to mention the following, as a specimen. Kynge Rycharde Cuer du Lyon, W. de Worde*, 1528: Gascoigne's Poesies, 1575—Spenser's Shepheardes Calender, 1586: Webbe's dis
French edition of this historian, [Rouen, 8vo. 1781.] says, is the second printed look ever published in France.' See Introduction to the rare and valuable editions of the Greek and Latin Classics,'second edit.
• I have been informed that a copy of this work (of which, perhaps, there are not four in existence) was sold at the Landsdown sale for £47. 5s. For further information concerning its contents, I refer the reader to Percy's Reliques of Antient English Poetry, vol. iii. p. xxv. ed. 1794: Warton's Hist. of English Poetry, vol. i. 119. 150: Ellis's Metrical Romances, vol. ij. 171. Ritson's M. R. vol. 1. lxxxvi.
course of English poetrie, 1586–Nash's Art of English Poesie, 1589.' Since Lord Oxford's time, this department of English literature has been carefully cultivated and improved. Mr. Douce, Mr. Malone, Mr. Chalmers, and Mr. Heber have brought it to nearly as high a point of perfection as it is capable of being carried. It is generally supposed that Mr. Kemble's Dramatic Library is unrivalled—but perfection is unattainable by man! Of this Mr. K. is sensible when he thinks upon some of the unique articles in the GARRICK COLLECTION!
13. Livres François, Ital. et Hispan. There might have been 700 volumes in these foreign languages, of which nearly 500 related to poetry (exclusively of others in the foregoing and following departments.)
14. Parliamentary Affairs and Trials.
UPWARDS of 400 volumes.
15. Trade and Commerce. ABOUT 300 volumes.