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Alumni display

Lotus of Hindostan, from Illustrations to Oriental Memoirs by James Forbes,1835.

Over the past century Aberystwyth University has been fortunate to receive a number of important bequests from various sources which have served both to enrich the library collection and to support teaching and scholarship. In the earliest years George Powell of Nanteos gave and bequeathed many books, manuscripts and objets d’art to the College between 1879 and 1882. These items formed the core of the original library and include several rare treasures such as the Warburton edition of Shakespeare, published in 1747, which was used by Samuel Johnson in the preparation of his English Dictionary.

Sir John Rhys collection book plate

Sir John Rhys, first Professor of Welsh at Oxford, left his collection of some 2000 books to us when he died back in 1915 and these items are recognisable by their very distinctive coloured book plates.

The display for the Alumni concentrates on two more recent bequests to the University. John Challinor was on the staff of the Geology Department from 1919, retiring as a Senior Lecturer in 1960. He died in August 1990 at the age of 95 and bequeathed his extensive collection of books relating to geology, botany and topography to the University. There are many valuable books published during the 18th and 19thcenturies, a large proportion are of antiquarian interest and many are key works in the history of geology.

Organic Remains of a Former World by James Parkinson, London, 1804.

Professor Fergus Johnston was on the staff of the History Department from 1934 until his retirement in 1967. He donated some 1500 books relating to history and military studies to the library back in 1986 and the remainder of his collection was passed to us by his widow after his death in 1991. The collection is particularly strong in military affairs from the 19thcentury, including the Napoleonic Wars. Many of these items are now much sought after by book collectors and command extremely high prices.

Pallas Armata : Military Essayes of the Ancient Grecian, Roman, and Modern Art of War. Written in the Years 1670 and 1671 by Sir James Turner.


Bill Hines – Information Services


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by | August 2, 2012 · 3:40 pm

New Library Displays

Hugh Owen Library

On Level D – Nicolas de Fer – A Royal Cartographer

Nicolas de Fer (1646-1720) was one of the great map makers of the late 17th century, proclaimed as Geographer of the King of Spain and the Dauphin. The Library is fortunate to own a large part of his key work – Les Forces d’Europe, which was originally published between 1690 and 1695 and then reissued in 1705. The full work included maps of fortified towns in France, the Low Countries, Germany and around the Mediterranean along with some views. The maps in our collection were acquired by Professor Rudler and later bequeathed to the Library.


On Level F – The Death of a Prime Minister

On 11 May 1812 the Prime Minister, Spencer Perceval, was assassinated in the lobby of the House of Commons. On display are some contemporary accounts of the event and the  subsequent trial of his killer John Bellingham, drawn from the Annual Register and Gentleman’s Magazine for 1812.

Thomas Parry Library

Two Literary Anniversaries

1812 marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of Joanna Baillie, the Scottish poet and dramatist, who died in 1851. On display we have an early edition of her complete works, published in 1853, and an original letter from our archives.

The poet Robert Browning was born on 7 May 1812 and died on 12 December 1889. On display are some early works by him and also a volume of poems presented to him by Sir John Hanmer, a Victorian politician who represented Shrewsbury and then Flintshire for many years.

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by | May 23, 2012 · 1:25 pm