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Upon the death of the Scottish philosopher, novelist, historian, and mathematician Thomas Carlyle in 1881, a portion of his personal library was left to Harvard – the only public bequeathal in Carlyle’s will. The annual report of the President and Treasurer of Harvard College for that year quotes the relevant passage, which reads in part: […]

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Records of reading

We recently acquired two very different manuscript library catalogs: one, a list of books purchased for the Reading Society, Benevolent Society, and Sunday School of Bury, Lancashire from 1806-1826, and the second, the catalogue of the Dundas family’s private library at Melville Castle near Edinburgh, compiled in 1862.  Library catalogs often can be much more […]

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