February 9, 2014

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INTRODUCTION

Morris study 2

A view of Morris’s study, shortly after his death, by Edmund H. New. (Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware Library.) 


“Friends of Mr. Morris will always regret that no catalogue of his complete library was ever issued, as it would have illustrated, in a remarkable manner, the real genius in selection which enabled him, in a very short space of time, to bring together so many specimens of first-rate importance” (The Guardian, 14 December 1898, p. 26).

William Morris (1834–1896) was a voracious reader from an early age, but it was only in his later years that he became a determined book-collector, and all the evidence suggests that he then began to acquire books and manuscripts on a large scale primarily because of his interest in the history of book illustration and typography. Hence when he founded the Kelmscott Press in 1891, his fascination with printing led him on to increasingly ambitious purchases for his library, especially of medieval books and manuscripts. Nevertheless, he also owned a very substantial collection of nineteenth-century books—we have identified more than a thousand so far—and this point is worth emphasizing, because most published remarks on Morris’s library, including those of Morris himself and Sydney Cockerell, give the misleading impression that his bookshelves held little else but incunables.

This website represents an attempt to reconstruct the personal library of one of the most influential figures of the Victorian era. Drawing upon a large number of sources, we are creating a short-title list of all the books and manuscripts Morris is known to have had in his collection. We are also including information about provenance, snippets from the Sotheby sale catalogue of Morris’s library (December 1898), buyers and prices of the lots in that auction, and links to digital copies of the titles. (We are aware, by the way, that some of those links, especially to Google Books, are not functional outside the United States because of copyright restrictions, but we hope that may change in the future.) Likewise, we are making use of the three manuscript catalogues of Morris’s books compiled during his lifetime (see Abbreviations under “MS catalogues”). At a later stage, we want to add more information about individual entries, such as allusions to them in Morris’s writings and correspondence.

The story of how Morris’s collection was dispersed after his death is complex and can only be briefly summarized here. Though some of his books remained within the family, his executors, Sydney Cockerell and F. S. Ellis, arranged for a private sale of the rest of the library to Richard Bennett, a Manchester collector, who quickly disposed of a large number of items that were subsequently offered at auction by Sotheby’s (London) in December 1898. Because Henry Wellcome was the most active buyer at that sale, the Wellcome Library in London today has one of the two largest collections of titles from Morris’s library, but of course the remainder of the lots in the 1898 auction are now widely scattered. The other substantial body of material once owned by Morris is at the Morgan Library in New York, since in 1902 J. Pierpont Morgan acquired the second part of Bennett’s collection. Unfortunately the Wellcome Library sold hundreds of Morris’s books during the 1930s and 1940s, and even the Morgan has deaccessioned a few titles that were treated as duplicates.

We have also decided, after some hesitation, to include books that were owned by Morris’s wife and daughters before his death, on the assumption that these books were all at one time under the roofs of Kelmscott House and Kelmscott Manor, and were no doubt in some instances mingled with Morris’s modern books. (Following the same principle, we are recording Morris’s personal copies of Kelmscott Press books that were published during his lifetime.) Similarly, we are listing books given by Morris to others, except for copies of his own works and Kelmscott Press titles. In a few instances, we know that these books came directly from his own bookshelves as duplicate copies, and the books he presented to others often tell us something about Morris’s literary tastes and preferences.

We are of course recording medieval and Renaissance manuscripts owned by Morris, though we have excluded his calligraphic exercises and drafts of his own writings. For manuscripts later acquired by J. Pierpont Morgan, we are making use of additional information found in Sydney Cockerell’s marginalia in his copy of the Morgan Catalogue (see Abbreviations) now at the Lilly Library, Indiana University; we are also providing the first two paragraphs of each manuscript description in the Morgan Catalogue.

In order to give a better sense of how much Morris is likely to have paid for his early books and manuscripts, we are gradually adding details from the Ellis valuation (see Abbreviations) compiled after Morris’s death.

Obviously this site continues to be a work in progress. We welcome suggestions, corrections, and especially new information; we are diligently searching in all the known sources, but we urge readers to tell us about books and manuscripts once in Morris’s possession that we may have overlooked.

We should add that we maintain another website devoted to the Kelmscott Chaucer.

William S. Peterson (wsp@umd.edu) & Sylvia Holton Peterson (swholton2@cs.com)

Morris bookplateMorris’s book label, created by his executors.


Bibliographical note: The best accounts of Morris’s library are two chapters by Paul Needham (though in both cases he limits his discussion mainly to fifteenth- and early sixteenth-century books) in William Morris and the Art of the Book (New York: Pierpont Morgan Library and Oxford University Press, 1976), pp. 21–47, and Under the Hammer: Book Auctions since the Seventeenth Century, ed. Robin Myers, Michael Harris, and Giles Mandelbrote (New Castle, Del.: Oak Knoll Press; London: British Library, 2001), pp. 173–208. (For Paul Needham’s contributions to our digital catalogue of the Morris library, see Acknowledgments.)

For another discussion of Morris’s book-buying habits, see Richard Landon, A Long Way from the Armstrong Beer Parlour: A Life in Rare Books, ed. Marie Elena Korey (Toronto: Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library; New Castle, Del.: Oak Knoll Press, 2014), pp. 323–38. Mark Samuels Lasner’s handlist of a Grolier Club exhibition, William Morris: The Collector as Creator (New York: Grolier Club, 1996), also offers a good description of Morris’s library and how it was formed.

A useful, more general study is Richard W. Oram with Joseph Nicholson, ed., Collecting, Curating, and Researching Writers’ Libraries (Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2014).

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March 12, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Cleasby — Icelandic–English dictionary (1869)

¶ Cleasby — Icelandic–English dictionary (1869)

Cleasby, Richard, and Gudbrand Vigfusson. An Icelandic–English dictionary. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1869.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: Morris catalogue (2), no. 691 (where it is misdated 1859).

Digital version: HathiTrust.

February 13, 2018

Comments Off on L’Abusé en court (c. 1494–95)

L’Abusé en court (c. 1494–95)

L’Abusé en court. [Lyon]: Martin Harvard, [c. 1494–95].

Illustrated.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Pierpont Morgan. — Morgan Library (ChL 1589).

References: Ellis valuation, fol. 15b, no. 185 (£15). — ISTC (ia00016000 ) — Morgan Catalogue 3, no. 617.

Digital version: Gallica.

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February 9, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Herodotus — Historiographi libri novem (1526)

¶ Herodotus — Historiographi libri novem (1526)

Herodotus. Herodoti Halicarnassei Historiographi libri novem. Cologne: Eucharius Cervicornus for Gottfried Hittorp, 10 January 1526.

With Morris book label. Shortly after Morris’s death, his executors sold several books privately to Fairfax Murray (who at one time hoped to buy the entire library), and this seems likely to have been one of them, since it does not appear in the 1898 Sotheby catalogue. A further complication is that when it was auctioned in 1917 (see below), the catalogue entry fails to mention Morris, but it is almost certainly the same book, since the binding (half russia) is identical.

Provenance: Morris. — Charles Fairfax Murray. — Fairfax Murray sale, Christie, 11 December 1917, lot 212. — Unlocated.

Reference: Fairfax Murray Catalogue (German), 1, no. 198.

February 5, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Chaucer — Minor Poems (1871–80)

¶ Chaucer — Minor Poems (1871–80)

The following titles are bound together (in Leighton’s usual quarter-linen style, probably done for Morris in the 1890s):

[1] Chaucer, Geoffrey. A one-text print of Chaucer’s minor poems. Ed. Frederick J. Furnivall. Chaucer Society publications, 1st ser. London: published for the Chaucer Society by N. Trübner & Co., 1871–1880.

Issued in two parts; Morris owned the first.

[2] Furnivall, Frederick J. Trial-forewords to my “Parallel-text edition of Chaucer’s minor poems” for the Chaucer Society. Chaucer Society publications, 2nd ser. London: published for the Chaucer Society by N. Trübner & Co., 1871–1873.

Morris owned the second part, “Further additions and corrections” (20 December 1873).


Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — [Probably] Sotheby 1898, lot 210 (part; sold to Sotheran for £1 18s.). — University of Maryland Libraries, Maryland Room (Rare Stacks PR1853 .F86 1868).


Sotheby 1898:

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February 2, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Moland — Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIIIe siécle (1856)

¶ Moland — Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIIIe siécle (1856)

Moland, Louis Émile Dieudonné, and Charles d’Hâericault. Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIIIe siécle. Bibliothèque elzevirienne. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1856.

With a note by Robert Steele: “Used by Morris in his translation of King Florus, Amis and Amile, and the Emperor Coustans.”

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Caxton Head [Tregaskis] catalogue 539, July 1903. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 67.

Digital version: HathiTrust.


Sotheby 1898:

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February 2, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Moland — Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIV siécle (1856)

¶ Moland — Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIV siécle (1856)

Moland, Louis Émile Dieudonné, and Charles d’Hâericault. Nouvelles françoises en prose du XIVe siécle. Bibliothèque elzevirienne. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1858.

The Sotheby 1898 catalogue indicates that Morris owned two copies of this title.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Unlocated.

Digital version: HathiTrust.


Sotheby 1898:

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February 1, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Wright — Les cent nouvelles nouvelles (1858)

¶ Wright — Les cent nouvelles nouvelles (1858)

Wright, Thomas, ed. Les cent nouvelles nouvelles. Bibliothèque elzevirienne. 2 vols. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1858.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Unlocated.

Digital version: HathiTrust.


Sotheby 1898:

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February 1, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Straparola — Les facétieuses nuits de Straparole (1857)

¶ Straparola — Les facétieuses nuits de Straparole (1857)

Straparola, Gianfrancesco. Les facétieuses nuits de Straparole. Bibliothèque elzévirenne. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1857.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Unlocated.


Sotheby 1898:

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February 1, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Montaiglon — Le livre du chevalier de la Tour-Landry (1854)

¶ Montaiglon — Le livre du chevalier de la Tour-Landry (1854)

Montaiglon, Anatole de. Le livre du chevalier de la Tour-Landry. Bibliothèque elzevirienne. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1854.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Caxton Head [Tregaskis] catalogue 539, July 1903, no. 193 (12s. 6d.). — Unlocated.

Digital version: HathiTrust.


Sotheby 1898:

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February 1, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Lancereau — Hitopadésa (1855)

¶ Lancereau — Hitopadésa (1855)

Lancereau, Édouard. Hitopadésa. Bibliothèque elzevirienne. Paris: Pierre Jannet, 1855.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 42 (part; sold to Breslauer for £1 9s.). — Paul von Baldinger. — Alphons Nobel. — Offered for sale by Bernard Quaritch, April 2014 (£400). — Offered for sale by Blackwell, April 2015. — William Morris Society (London).

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 61.


Sotheby 1898:

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January 30, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Three titles (1491–c. 1510)

¶ Three titles (1491–c. 1510)

The following titles are bound together:

[1] Vergerio, Pietro Paolo [Petrus Paulus Vergerius]. De ingenuis moribus ac liberalibus studiis. Trans. Leonardo Bruni [Leonardus Brunus Aretinus]. Venice: Johannes Baptista Sessa, April 1491.

References: ISTC (iv00136000). — Morgan Catalogue 2, no. 349.

[2] Astemio, Lorenz [Laurentius Abstemius]. Fabulae. Venice: Johannes Tacuinus, de Tridino, 1 June [1499].

References: ISTC (ia00012000). — Morgan Catalogue 2, no. 369.

Digital version: VdI.

[3] Salomonis et Marcolphi dyalogus. [Milan(?): c. 1505–1510].

Reference: Morgan Catalogue 2, no. 395.


Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — J. Pierpont Morgan. — Morgan Library (ChL968). [The three works are catalogued separately: Vergerio; Astemio; Salomonis et Marcolphi dyalogus.]

January 30, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Saga library (1891–93)

¶ Morris — Saga library (1891–93)

Morris, William, and Eiríkr Magnússon, trans. The saga library. 3 vols. London: Bernard Quaritch, 1891–93.

Described in the Lobb catalogue as “L.P., Autograph Presentation Copy from Morris, vols 1 to 3, with 8 odd and duplicate vols of the ordinary edition, etc. 12 vols.”

Provenance: Morris. — Jane Morris (?). — May Morris. — Mary Lobb. — Lobb sale 2, no. 486 (sold for £3 5s.). — Unlocated.

January 19, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Musurus — Etymologicum Magnum Graecum (1499)

¶ Musurus — Etymologicum Magnum Graecum (1499)

Musurus, Marcus, ed. Etymologicum Magnum Graecum. Venice: Zacharias Callierges for Nicolaus Blastus and Anna Notaras, 8 July 1499.

The text, including the title, is entirely in Greek.

Provenance: Dr. Askew. — Askew sale, Baker, c. 22 February 1775 (sold to Michael Wodhull for £2 12s. 6d.). — Michael Wodhull. — Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 518 (sold to Quaritch for £4). — John Boyd Thacher. — Library of Congress (Thacher Collection 483).

References: ISTC (ie00112000). — Thacher 1, no. 483.

Digital version: BSB.


Sotheby 1898:

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January 16, 2018

Comments Off on Tchernychewsky — Que faire? (1876)

Tchernychewsky — Que faire? (1876)

Tchernychewsky, N. G. Que faire? Roman. Milano: Levino Robecchi, 1876.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 750.

January 12, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Epistole et evangelii (1551)

¶ Epistole et evangelii (1551)

Epistole et Evangelii, et letioni vulgari in lingua thoscana, nuouamente ristampate. Florence: Giunti, 1551.

Illustrated. With letters from W. M. Ivins, Jr., to Sydney Cockerell, 4 November 1921; Cockerell to Ivins, 15 November 1921; and A. M. Hind to Ivins, 21 September 1931. Cockerell’s letter says, “Morris owned it as early as 1890 — It was not until 1892 that I started cataloguing this library & counting the cuts — & I do not know how he acquired it — When we sold the library in 1898 it was valued at £25.”

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 515 (sold to Quaritch for £89). — Charles Fairfax Murray. — William M. Ivins, Jr. — Newberry Library (VAULT Wing folio ZP 535 .G437).

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 493 (with two X’s beside the title).


Sotheby 1898:

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January 12, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ La Motte-Fouqué — Romantic fiction (1843?)

¶ La Motte-Fouqué — Romantic fiction (1843?)

La Motte-Fouqué, Friedrich Heinrich Karl, Freiherr de. Romantic fiction: shorter tales from the German. 2nd ed. London: Edward Lumley, [1843?].

Inscription by Dante Gabriel Rossetti: “May Morris with DGR’s love on her 10th birthday March 25 1872.”

Provenance: Dante Gabriel Rossetti. — May Morris. — John Bryson. — Ian Hodgkins and Co. (purchased at Bryson sale, Christie, London). — Mark Samuels Lasner. — Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware.

January 11, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Roots of the mountains (1890)

¶ Morris — Roots of the mountains (1890)

Morris, William. The roots of the mountains. London: Reeves and Turner, 1890.

Inscribed by Morris to Jenny Morris.

Provenance: Morris. — Jenny Morris. — Mark Samuel Lasner. — Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware.

Digital version: HathiTrust.

January 11, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Rossetti — Family letters (1895)

¶ Rossetti — Family letters (1895)

Rossetti, Dante Gabriel. Dante Gabriel Rossetti: his family letters. Ed. William Michael Rossetti. 2 vols. London: Ellis and Elvey, 1895.

With Morris book label.

Provenance: Morris. — Mark Samuels Lasner (purchased from Heartwood Books, 1982). — Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware Library.

Digital version: HathiTrust.

January 11, 2018

Comments Off on Webster — Book of rhyme (1881)

Webster — Book of rhyme (1881)

Webster, Augusta. A book of rhyme. London: Macmillan, 1881.

Inscribed by Webster to Jane Morris.

Provenance: Augusta Webster. — Jane Morris. — Mark Samuels Lasner. — Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware Library.

January 11, 2018

Comments Off on Blunt — Esther (1895)

Blunt — Esther (1895)

Blunt, Wilfrid Scawen. Esther: a young man’s tragedy, together with the Love sonnets of Proteus. Boston: Copeland and Day, 1895.

Inscribed “Jane Morris, from Wilfrid Scawen Blunt, Newbuildings Place, May 30, 1896.”

Provenance: Blunt. — Jane Morris. — Mark Samuels Lasner. — Mark Samuels Lasner Collection, University of Delaware Library (Books A-Z PR4149.B8 E8x 1895 ).

Digital version: Google.

January 10, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Mirth in ridicule (1708)

¶ Mirth in ridicule (1708)

Mirth in ridicule, or a satyr against immoderate laughing. London: J. Morphew, [1708].

Morris book label but not listed in the Sotheby 1898 catalogue.

Provenance: Morris. — Sotheby, 2004, lot 348 (sold for £1,920). — Unlocated.

Reference: ESTC (T118869).

Digital version: EECO.

January 10, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Rossetti — Family letters (1895)

¶ Rossetti — Family letters (1895)

Rossetti, Dante Gabriel. Dante Gabriel Rossetti: his family letters. Ed. William Michael Rossetti. 2 vols. London: Ellis and Elvey, 1895.

Large paper. This probably passed through the Sotheby 1898 sale, since it has Morris’s book label, but it does not appear in that catalogue.

Provenance: Morris. — W.F.G. — James William Ellsworth. — Rosenbach (sold 27 December 1943 for $25). — Christie, 2004, lot 198 (sold for £1,075). — Unlocated.

Digital version: HathiTrust.

January 8, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Carta feodi simplicis (1505?)

¶ Carta feodi simplicis (1505?)

Carta feodi simplicis cum littera atturnatoria. London: Wynkyn de Worde, [1505?].

Illustrated.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 258 (sold to Ellis for £25). — Ellis. — George Dunn. — Dunn sale, Sotheby, 11 February 1913, lot 20. — Special Collections, Harvard Law School Library (STC 15579.4 Beale T159).

References: Ellis valuation, fol. 48b (no price). — ESTC (S118099).

Digital version: EEBO.


Sotheby 1898:

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January 5, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Collection de poésies, romans, chroniques (1838–58)

¶ Collection de poésies, romans, chroniques (1838–58)

Collection de poésies, romans, chroniques &c. . . . publié d’après d’anciens manuscrits et d’après des éditions des XVe et XVIe siècles. 25 vols. in 4. Paris: L.-C. Silvestre [and others], 1838–58.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 640.

January 5, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Manuscript notebook

¶ Morris — Manuscript notebook

Morris, William. Manuscript notebook, chiefly notes on books in British Museum.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 6.

January 3, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Spruner von Merz — Spruner-Menke atlas antiquus (1865)

¶ Spruner von Merz — Spruner-Menke atlas antiquus (1865)

Spruner von Merz, Karl. Spruner-Menke atlas antiquus. Ed. Theodorus Menke. Germany: J. Perthes, 1865.

This collection of maps went through several editions; we are not sure which version Morris owned.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 1136 (part; sold to Henry Wellcome for 11s.). — Henry Wellcome. — Wellcome Library [deaccessioned]. — Unlocated.


Sotheby 1898:

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January 3, 2018

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Defence of Guenevere (1875)

¶ Morris — Defence of Guenevere (1875)

Morris, William. The defence of Guenevere and other poems. London: Ellis & White, 1875.

Large paper.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 176.

December 21, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Magnússon — Volsünga saga (1870)

¶ Magnússon — Volsünga saga (1870)

Magnússon, Eiríkr, and William Morris, trans. Volsünga saga. The story of the Volsungs and Niblungs, with certain songs from the elder Edda. London: F. S. Ellis, 1870.

Large paper; presentation copy from Morris to unidentified recipient (probably Jane Morris), in a binding designed by Elizabeth Burden (Jane’s sister) and executed by T. J. Cobden-Sanderson. Two pages of the book are decorated by Morris.

Provenance: Morris. — Jane Morris (?). — May Morris. — Mary Lobb. — Lobb sale 2, lot 471 (perhaps sold for £22; in the British Library copy of the catalogue, the lot is marked both “Sell” and “Keep”). — Unlocated.

Reference: LeMire, p. 51.

December 21, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Chaucer Society’s publications

¶ Chaucer Society’s publications

Chaucer Society’s publications.

One lot in the Sotheby 1898 catalogue (see below) included a substantial collection of miscellaneous publications by the Chaucer Society (founded in 1868): First Series, 14 numbers (between 16 and 43); Second Series (18 numbers); A six-print text of Chaucer’s Canterbury tales, ed. Frederick J. Furnivall; and Chaucer’s various writings (10 vols.). The books probably came to Morris as gifts from his friend Furnivall, the founder of the Society.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 210 (sold to Sotheran for £1 18s.). — Unlocated.


Sotheby 1898:

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December 20, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Durand — Rationale divinorum officiorum (1475)

¶ Durand — Rationale divinorum officiorum (1475)

Durand, Guillaume [Guillelmus Duranti]. Rationale divinorum officiorum. Ulm: Johann Zainer, 18 March 1475.

Illustrated. Note at end of book: “Memorandum: That this the concluding folio of the work, was most obligingly copied for me (verbatim, literation and lineation) by my valued friend William Brace (B.A., LL.B., Univ Lond.) from the 1475 Ulm copy in the British Museum, and was given to me by him today, March 27, 1878. J.W. Bone.”

Provenance: J. W. Bone. — Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 401 (sold to Henry Wellcome for £1 3s.). — Henry Wellcome. — Wellcome Library (Closed stores EPB Incunabula 2.f.2 (SR)).

References: ISTC (id00408000). —Poynter, no. 215


Sotheby 1898:

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December 20, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Durand — Rationale divinorum officiorum (1475)

¶ Durand — Rationale divinorum officiorum (1475)

Durand, Guillaume [Guillelmus Duranti]. Rationale divinorum officiorum. Ulm: Johann Zainer, 18 March 1475.

Illustrated.

Provenance: Alexander Vulpii. — Leon Hardi Haickl. — Leo S. Olschki (dealer). — Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 400 (sold to Henry Wellcome for £1 6s.). — Henry Wellcome. — Wellcome Library (Closed stores EPB Incunabula 2.f.1 (SR)).

References: ISTC (id00408000). — MS catalogue (2), no. 948, p. 87 (with an X beside the title). — Poynter, no. 214.


Sotheby 1898:

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December 15, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Conradus, de Brundelsheim — Sermones (1480)

¶ Conradus, de Brundelsheim — Sermones (1480)

Conradus, de Brundelsheim [Soccus]. Sermones de tempore. Deventer: Richardus Pafraet, 1480.

Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 1124 (sold to Proctor for £5 10s.). — Robert Proctor. — Unlocated.

References: Ellis valuation, fol. 42 (10s.). — ISTC (is00588000). — MS catalogue (2), no. 932, p. 85 (with an X beside the title).

Digital version: ULD.


Sotheby 1898:

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December 14, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Rawlinson — Great monarchies (1873–76)

¶ Rawlinson — Great monarchies (1873–76)

The two following titles are conflated in the Sotheby 1898 catalogue as The seven great monarchies of the ancient eastern world. (Morris seems not to have owned The sixth great Oriental monarchy, published in 1873, or if he did, it may have been deaccessioned by the Wellcome Library, which has another copy without Morris’s book label.)

[1] Rawlinson, George. The five great monarchies of the ancient eastern world, or the history, geography, and antiquities of Chaldaea, Assyria, Babylon, Media, and Persia. 3rd ed. 3 vols. London: John Murray, 1873.

[2] Rawlinson. The seventh great Oriental monarchy, or the geography, history, and antiquities of the Sassanian or new Persian empire. 2 vols. in 1. London: Longmans, 1876.

Digital version: Internet Archive (Morris’s copy).


Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 822 (sold to Henry Wellcome for £6 10s.). — Henry Wellcome. — Wellcome Library (Closed stores Hist. 2 ZBB.28).

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 136 (where the title is rendered as “Rawlinson’s Ancient Monarchies”).


Sotheby 1898:

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December 13, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Aquinas (c. 1500) and Biel (1499)

¶ Aquinas (c. 1500) and Biel (1499)

The following titles were bound together but were separated after Morris’s death:

[1] Aquinas, Thomas, Saint. In hoc libello continentur tres tractatuli. Primus est sancti Thome Aquinatis de mirabili quidditate et efficacia venerabilis sacramenti eucharistie. Secundus est magistri Nicolai de lyra de idoneo ministrante suscipiente idem sacramentum. Tercius est alicuius docti collectoris de expositione dominice orationis. [Cologne: Heinrich Quentel, c. 1500.]

Digital version: Google.

[2] Biel, Gabriel. Epitoma expositionis sacri canonis missae. Ed. Wendelin Steinbach. Tübingen: [Johann Otmar for Friedrich Meynberger, 1499.]

Illustrated.

Reference: ISTC (ib00654000).

Digital version: BSB.


Provenance: Morris. — Richard Bennett. — Sotheby 1898, lot 1078 (sold to Proctor for £1 16s.). — Robert Proctor. — [Aquinas only:] — Christie (South Kensington), 20 September 1996, lot 2 (sold to Maggs for £1,255). — Maggs catalogue 1220, no. 8. — Unlocated.


Sotheby 1898:

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December 12, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Boedhvarsson — Riimur af Ingvari Viidfaurla og Sveini Syni Hans (1777)

¶ Boedhvarsson — Riimur af Ingvari Viidfaurla og Sveini Syni Hans (1777)

Boedhvarsson, Arni. Riimur af Ingvari Viidfaurla og Sveini Syni Hans. [Iceland:] Hrappsey, 1777.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 50.

December 12, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Horae (c. 1520)

¶ Horae (c. 1520)

Horae. Paris, c. 1520.

We have been unable to identify this book. The entry in MS catalogue (2) reads: “Book of Hours printed on vellum (imperfect, printed at Paris about 1520).”

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 38 (with two X’s beside the title).

December 11, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Magnússon — Volsünga saga (1870)

¶ Magnússon — Volsünga saga (1870)

Magnússon, Eiríkr, and William Morris, trans. Volsünga saga. The story of the Volsungs and Niblungs, with certain songs from the elder Edda. London: F. S. Ellis, 1870.

In a binding designed by Philip Webb..

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 250.

December 11, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Aeneids of Virgil (1876)

¶ Morris — Aeneids of Virgil (1876)

Morris, William, trans. Aeneids of Virgil. 2 vols. London: Ellis & White, 1876.

Large paper.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

References: LeMire, p. 65. — MS catalogue (2), no. 175.

December 8, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Duns Scotus — Quaestiones (c. 1477)

¶ Duns Scotus — Quaestiones (c. 1477)

Duns Scotus, John [Johannes]. Quaestiones selectae abbreviatae et ordinatae per alphabetum super quattuor libris Sententiarum Petri Lombardi Quodlibetisque Metaphysicae et De Anima. Ed. Johann, von Köln [Johannes de Colonia]. [Venice]: Vindelinus de Spira, [c. 1477].

The edition we have chosen is conjectural. The full entry in MS catalogue (2) is “Petri Lombardi sententiae sine loco et n. probably printed at Venice.”

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

References: ISTC (id00384000). — MS catalogue (2), no. 802 (with two X’s next to the title).

December 8, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Earthly paradise (1872)

¶ Morris — Earthly paradise (1872)

Morris, William. The earthly paradise. 10 vols. London: Ellis and Green, 1872.

“Popular Edition. In ten parts.” An incomplete set: includes parts 3, 4, 5, 6, 10.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 260.

December 8, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Plates of a book about the making of tapestry

¶ Plates of a book about the making of tapestry

Plates of a book about the making of tapestry.

Unidentified. The full entry in MS catalogue (2) is “The Making of Tapestry. Plates only. Paris.”

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 335.

December 8, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Album of eastern illuminations

¶ Album of eastern illuminations

Album of eastern illuminations.

Unidentified. The full entry in MS catalogue (2) is “Album of Eastern Illuminations (Delhi work seemingly).”

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 353.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Facsimiles of ancient manuscripts (1873–?)

¶ Facsimiles of ancient manuscripts (1873–?)

Facsimiles of ancient manuscripts. London: Paleographical Society, 1873—?

This series continued into the twentieth century, so it is unclear how many volumes Morris owned.

Provenance: Morris — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 324.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Lemprière — Biblioteca classica (1825)

¶ Lemprière — Biblioteca classica (1825)

Lemprière, John. Biblioteca classica, or a classical dictionary containing a full account of all the proper names mentioned in ancient authors, with tables of coins, weights and measures in use among the Greeks and Romans. London: T. & J. Allman, 1825.

MS catalogue (2) does not identify the date of this book, which went through many editions.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 294.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Morris — Life and death of Jason (1877)

¶ Morris — Life and death of Jason (1877)

Morris, William. The life and death of Jason: a poem. 7th ed. London: Ellis and White, 1877.

With corrections in pencil.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 263.

Digital version: Google.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Sturluson — Sagan af Agli Skallagrímssyni (1856)

¶ Sturluson — Sagan af Agli Skallagrímssyni (1856)

Sturluson, Snorri. Sagan af Agli Skallagrímssyni. Ed. Jón Þorkelsson. Reykjavík: Einar Þórðarson, 1856.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 274.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Kringvåra balk (?)

¶ Kringvåra balk (?)

Kringvåra balk (?)

We cannot identify this book. The entry in MS catalogue (2) reads: “Kringvara balk (lacks title) printed in Iceland about 1680.”

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 271.

December 7, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Chaucer — Works (1896)

¶ Chaucer — Works (1896)

Chaucer, Geoffrey. The works of Geoffrey Chaucer. Ed. F. S. Ellis. Hammersmith: Kelmscott Press, 1896.

Illustrated by Edward Burne-Jones. Presented by Jane Morris to Exeter College Library, 7 November 1896, with a note by Sydney Cockerell: “This is the first bound copy of the Chaucer. It was delivered to William Morris on Tuesday June 2nd 1896.”

Provenance: Morris. — Jane Morris. — Exeter College Library, Oxford University (9 YHM 55c.1.).

Reference: Bibliography, A40.

December 6, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Bulteau — Description de la cathédrale de Chartres (1850)

¶ Bulteau — Description de la cathédrale de Chartres (1850)

Bulteau, Marcel Joseph. Description de la cathédrale de Chartres. Chartres: Garnier and others, 1850.

Illustrated.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 149.

December 6, 2017

Comments Off on ¶ Bayet — L’art byzantin (1883)

¶ Bayet — L’art byzantin (1883)

Bayet, Charles. L’art byzantin. Paris: A. Quantin, 1883.

Illustrated.

Provenance: Morris. — Unlocated.

Reference: MS catalogue (2), no. 130.