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- Collection Description & Creator Information
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Gell, William, undated
Collection Description & Creator Information
The collection consists of over 2,000 autograph items of prominent English and European figures--the great and near great, the noteworthy and notorious--from the 16th to the mid-19th centuries. Groups of individuals represented in the collection include writers, lawyers, actors and actresses, opera stars, naval and military heroes, explorers, artists, clergyman, politicians, doctors and medical researchers, and royalty. While the emphasis is on autographs of Englishmen/women, there is a good number of French manuscripts, particularly two volumes of items dating from the French Revolution and the First Empire. By far, the largest group of manuscripts (8 volumes) consists of correspondence from mainly English 19th-century artists and engravers.
Included are a letter (1550) by Holy Roman Emperor Charles V to Pope Julius III against new Church policies; a document (1576) by Elizabeth I ordering from the Master of the Wardrobe various cloths, "two Greate hammers," and a large iron shovel; documents and letters by Louis XIV (1674-1715), Louis XV (1724), and Louis Philippe (1816); a document (1720) signed by Issac Newton; a letter (1779) of fatherly advice by George III to his son William IV; and three letters (1786-1792) by Lavoisier. There is one volume devoted to the letters of cardinals, ranging from 1550 to 1738.
Other notable names, by groups, include: artistic--Fielding, Reynolds, Turner; literary--Congreve, Goethe, Moore, Rousseau, Voltaire; military/naval--Bligh, Cook, Lafayette, Napoleon, Nelson, Wellington; theatrical--Booth, Kean, Siddons; and royal--Charles I, Charles II, Eugene of Savoy, Ferdinand I, George III, James I, James II, Sigismund II Augustus, and William III. In addition, the collection contains, bound with the manuscripts in a grangerized manner, numerous engravings, mezzotints, and other types of prints.
Volumes 16, 18, 31, 32, 33, and 42 do not exist. Volume 40 was disbound and can be found in Box 1. Box 2 contains related lists and photographs.
- Archival Appraisal Information:
Collection Revised LITMSS record 11/06/90
Access & Use
- Access Restrictions:
Collection is open for research use.
- Conditions for Reproduction and Use:
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.
- Credit this material:
Gell, William, 1777-1836; John Wild Autograph Collection, C0047, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library
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