Catalogue of the library collected by the late J.R. Rowntree, Esq

A manuscript library catalogue of the Barrister John Russell Rowntree and his sister Elizabeth, who inherited her brother’s books after his death in 1831. The four sections are: History, voyages, travels, Bewick’s works, & miscellanies; Poetry and the drama, English; Strawberry-Hill publications; and Auctores Classici Gk. et Lat., &c. Although largely consisting of books published during Rowntree’s lifetime (1761-1831), the earliest recorded work is Wynkyn de Worde’s 1517 Incipiunt Opera Super Constitutiones prouinciales, 2nd edition. There are two other 16th century titles, and a good number of 17th and early 18th century items including a first edition of Hobbes’ Leviathan and Kircherius’ China Illustrated, 1667. From his lifetime, Rowntree collected a large number of travel books incorporating voyages and descriptions of the Far East, Africa, Australia (including Cook’s Voyages), the South Seas, Europe and Britain. Other subjects include a large Bewick collection, law, religion and literature in addition to drama and classics. Rowntree’s substantial holdings of items printed by the private press at Strawberry Hill, established by Horace Walpole in 1757, include thirty of the thirty-five ‘publications’ recorded in Horace Walpole and the Strawberry Hill Press, Havens, 1901 (there are a further 66 ephemeral items noted as being published by the press). Also included in the collection are two of the first books to be printed, Gray’s poems (two copies) and Hentzner’s A Journey into England, both printed in 1757.

TitleCatalogue of the library collected by the late J.R. Rowntree, Esq. of Stockon-on-Tees, and the late property of his deceased sister Miss Elizabeth Rowntree, of the same place …, 1843 October / catalogued by William Robinson, bookseller.

Catalog Record

LWL Mss Vol. 229

Acquired March 2017