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Proto-bibliophiles amongst the English aristocracy, 1500-1700.

Reid, Peter H.



The idea of aristocratic book collecting in Great Britain tends to conjure up images of great bibliophiles like Sunderland, Roxburghe and Spencer or of the benign neglect of country house libraries. Yet the origins of aristocratic bibliophilia - which in time gave rise to country house libraries - lie much further back in history with a handful of important English collectors who led the way the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. This article presents an overview of some of these early collectors, their position in the society of the time and the influences which made them purchase books.


REID, P.H. 2002. Proto-bibliophiles amongst the English aristocracy, 1500-1700. Library history [online], 18(1), pages 25-38. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 30, 2002
Online Publication Date Apr 30, 2002
Publication Date Apr 30, 2002
Deposit Date Jun 8, 2009
Publicly Available Date Jun 8, 2009
Journal Library history
Print ISSN 0024-2306
Electronic ISSN 1745-8161
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 18
Issue 1
Pages 25-38
Keywords English aristocracy; Book collecting; Aristocratic bibliophilia
Public URL


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