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The Selection Of Texts By Chetham’s Library

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Chapter Summary

The chapter begins with biographies of the four major figures in the Library's early history: its original three trustees, Richard Johnson, John Tilsley and Richard Hollinworth, and the most influential of the later trustees, Nicholas Stratford, the Warden of the Collegiate Church between 1667 and 1684. This chapter considers the difficulties involved in such a study, particularly in the reconstruction of the trustees' intellectual and bibliographical intentions, and the acknowledgment of the varieties of use to which early modern texts were put at the Library. In order to understand the significance of the materiality of the texts in Chetham's Library, two aspects of the trustees' interpretation of the Library's original purpose need to be restated: their commitment to a useful scholarly institution founded in perpetuity, and the aim, stated in Chetham's will, to heal and settle the wounds of the Civil War, regicide and Commonwealth.

Keywords: Chetham's Library; Collegiate Church; Library's early history; texts; trustees



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