On Wednesday 7th February, we welcomed our Hilary Term Lincoln Unlocked lecturer, Dr David Rundle. He addressed Vivian Green’s statement, in The Commonwealth of Lincoln College, 1427-1977 that
The greatest donor [of manuscripts] was the founder’s nephew, Robert Fleming, Dean of Lincoln, a man of conspicuous taste and culture… His princely gift, including many classical and humanistic works, made Lincoln’s holding momentarily the finest in Oxford, second only to that of the University Library itself. (pp.173-4) Read more
Last term’s Unlocking event looked at the first 300 years of the Senior Library, from the heady days of the 15th century, when Lincoln’s library must have been one of the finest in Oxford, to the major bequests of the 18th century. It was particularly exciting to be able to show some of the College’s manuscripts, normally kept in the Bodleian.
Lincoln’s collections of books and archival materials along with its spaces and places tell a wonderful story of its distinctive heritage. The ‘Discover Lincoln’ series will look at the unique objects and historic places of Lincoln told through Lincoln’s best asset – its people. We hope that you will enjoy discovering or rediscovering part of what makes Lincoln so special. This week’s entry comes from Dr Cristina Dondi (Oakeshott Senior Research Fellow) and focuses on the Nuremberg Chronicle. Read more
This Term we were very excited to have the termly Unlocking the Senior Library session curated by one of our students for the first time. Alice Fraser, who is reading for a Masters in Archaeology, has been working in the Senior Library once a week, investigating the Archaeology section in order to produce a collection-level description and she shared with us some interesting items she has discovered as she has worked through the collection. Read more
On Tuesday 16th May, we contributed an exhibition to Oxford Jewish Cultural Week. Showcasing some of the treasures of our Hebrew Book collection, including works owned and used by Rectors Richard Kilbye and Thomas Marshall and our oldest work containing Hebrew type, the exhibition also featured Library and Archive material relating to Samuel Alexander, the first professing Jew to be elected Fellow of any College in either Oxford or Cambridge. Read more
I am currently cataloguing the corner of the Senior Library that houses a small collection of books in Arabic, Aramaic, Armenian, Syriac and Ethiopic, languages that pose a challenge to even the hardiest antiquarian cataloguer. These books come largely from the library of Thomas Marshall (1621-1685), Rector of Lincoln and a remarkable philologist who left over 1,000 books to the College. Among this collection are 4 of the earliest works printed in Armenian, translations of the Quran and a variety of polyglot editions of parts of the Bible. Read more
Conservators at the Oxford Conservation Consortium work to save Lincoln's heritage.
In the course of my work in the Archive, I have recently come across a tiny gem in the College collection of Wesleyana: The Methodist Pocket Book for the Year of our Lord 1798. The volume measures 8 x 12 cm and contains “poetry, anecdotes and a variety of useful and edifying articles” as well as blank spaces where the owner could record expenditure. The book was printed for G. Whitfield, City Road [Chapel], London and could be bought at Methodist Chapels “in Town & Country”. George Whitfield had been left John Wesley’s types and presses in his will, and he was a prominent publisher of Methodist works in the period following Wesley’s death. Read more
Lincoln Unlocked was officially launched on November 23rd with a lecture on Richard Kilbye, Lincoln’s earliest collector of Hebrew books, by Joanna Weinberg, Oxford Professor of Early Modern Jewish History and Rabbinics.
A list of Talmudic references in Kilbye’s hand in his copy of Aron of Pesaro, Sefer Toledot.
Among the treasures of Lincoln’s Senior Library is its collection of Hebraica and Judaica. Although this is not the largest collection of Hebrew books in Oxford college libraries, as a fine result of the systematic collecting of books in the field of Hebrew and Jewish studies it is one the most remarkable collections of printed Hebraica and Judaica in Oxford. Read more