Book Ii. needful to make considerable alterations in order to adapt Earplv the building to its new uses. This outlay increased the TM^TM"TMH eventual cost of the mansion, and of its appliances and Mi.TM*. fittings, to somewhat more than twenty-three thousand pounds. The adaptation, with the removal and re-arrangement of the Collections, occupied nearly five years. It was not until the beginning of the year 1759 that the Museum was opened for public inspection. When removed to Bloomsbury, it was but brought back to within a few hundred yards of its first abode.

coxsTiTL-. We have seen that according to the plan for the governT.onofti.e ment 0f tne institution which Sloane had sketched in his


Trust. Codicil of July, 1749, there would have been a Board of Visitors as well as a Board of Trustees. But, by the foundation Statute, enacted in 1753, both of these Boards were incorporated into one. Forty-one Trustees were constituted, with full powers of management and control. Six of these were representatives of the several families of Cotton, Harley, and Sloane, the head, or nearest in lineal succession, of each family having the nomination, from time to time, of such representatives or 'Family Trustees,' when, by death or otherwise, vacancies should occur. Twenty were 'Official' Trustees, in accordance, so far, with Sloane's scheme for the constitution of his Board of Visitors; and by these two classes, conjointly, the other fifteen Trustees were to be elected.

The Official Trustees were to be the holders for the time being of the following offices:—(1) The Archbishop of Canterbury, (2) the Lord Chancellor, (3) the Speaker of the House of Commons, (4) the Lord President of the Council, (5) the First Lord of the Treasury, (6) the Lord Privy Seal, (7) the First Lord of the Admiralty, (8 and 9) the Secretaries of State, (10) the Lord Steward, (11) the Rookii. Lord Chamberlain, (12) the Bishop of London, (13) the Chancellor of the Exchequer, (14) the Lord Chief Justice ^£"H of England, (15) the Master of the Rolls, (16) the Lord ""«»■ Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, (17) the AttorneyGeneral, (18) the Solicitor-General, (19) the President of the Royal Society, (20) the President of the College of Physicians.

To the first three of these Official Trustees Parliament Act 01

26 Geo. II,

entrusted the appointment, from time to time, of all the c 22, cuu.es

Officers of the Museum, except the Principal Librarian,

who is to be appointed by the Crown, on the nomination

of the 'Principal Trustees,' as the first three Trustees—

the Archbishop, Chancellor, and Speaker—have always been


The following fifteen persons were the first elected Trustees, under the Act of 1753 :—The Duke of Argyle, the Earl of Northumberland, Lord Willoughby of Parham, Lord Charles Cavendish, the Honourable Philip Yorke, Sir George Lyttelton, Sir John Evelyn, James West, Nicholas Hardinge, William Sloane, William Sotheby, Charles Grey, the Reverend Dr. Thomas Birch, James Ward, and William Watson. The first meeting of the Trustees under the Act was Records of held at the Cockpit, Whitehall, on the 17th of December, Museum, in

-1 ry MS. Addit.,

The first 'Principal Librarian' * was Dr. Gowin Knight, a member of the College of Physicians, and eminent, in his

* The term 'Librarian,' as used at the British Museum, has never implied any special connection with the Books, printed or manuscript. All the Keepers of Departments were, originally, called 'Under Librarian.' The General Superintendent or Warden has always been called 'Principal Librarian.'

Book u, day, as a cultivator of experimental science. Some magEarlv netic apparatus of his construction and gift was placed in Thktm"t°sh the Museum soon after its opening, and attracted, in its MusKUM. jayj muca attention. He received the appointment after a keen competition with the more widely-known physician and botanist, Sir John Hill. The first three 'Keepers of Departments' were Dr. Matthew Maty, Dr. Charles Morton, and Mr. James Empson. Dr. Knight retained his post until 1772.

Maty and Morton succeeded in turn to the office of Principal Librarian, and their respective services will have a claim to notice hereafter. Empson had been the valued servant and friend of Sir Hans Sloane. He is the only officer whose name appears in Sloane's Will. He had served him as Keeper of the Museum at Chelsea for many years.

There is, in one of the letters of Horace Walpole to Sir Horace Mann, an amusing account of an initiatory meeting of the original Trustees, held prior to their formal constitution by Parliament. It is marked by the writer's usual superciliousness towards all hobbies, except the dilettante hobby which he himself was wont to ride so hard. 'I employ my time chiefly, at present,' he wrote to Mann, in February, 1753, 'in the guardianship of embryos and cockle shells. Sir Hans Sloane valued his Museum at eighty thousand pounds, and so would anybody who loves hippopotamuses, sharks with one ear, and spiders as big as geese. . . . We are a charming wise set—all Philosophers, Botanists, Antiquarians, and Mathematicians—and adjourned our first meeting because Lord Macclesfield, our Chairman, was engaged in a party for finding out the Longitude.'

'One of our number/ continues Walpolb, 'is a Mora- Book Ii, vian, who signs himself "Henry XXVIII, Count de Ea*£, Rkuss," The Moravians have settled a colony at Chelsea, in Sir Hans' neighbourhood, and I believe he intended to Mu5ID» beg Count Henry the Twenty-Eighth's skeleton for his Museum.' This distinguished foreigner does not appear in the parliamentary list.

The Chairman of the preliminary meeting so airily described by Walpole, continued, under the definitive constitution of the Trust, to take a leading part in its administration. It appears to have been by Lord Macclesfield that the original * Statutes and Bye-laws' of the Museum, or many of them, were drafted.'

In the form in which they were first issued, in 1759, Thk Rt.arthese statutes directed that the Museum should 'be kept iTMsTMo7 open every day in the week, except Saturday and Sunday.' and8tudt For the greater part of the year the public hours were from 1'69"ls0■',' nine o'clock in the morning until three o'clock in the afternoon. On certain days, in the summer months, the open hours were from four o'clock in the afternoon until eight— so as to meet the requirements of persons actively engaged in business during the early part of the day. But the publicity was hampered by a system of admission-tickets which had to be applied for on a day precedent to that of every intended visit. The application had first to be made, then registered; a second application had to follow, in order to receive the ticket; and the ticket could rarely be used at the time of receiving it. So that, in practice, each visit to the Museum had commonly to be preceded by two visits to Ms.addit..

! T, , T • 1 , 6179. f 3r>.

the ' rorter s Lodge. em.

The visitors were admitted in parties, at the prescribed hours, and were conducted through the Museum by its officers according to a routine which, practically and usually, Book Ii, allowed to each group of visitors only one hour for the inEaely spection of the whole. Special arrangements, however, Thtb"til were made for those who resorted to the Museum for purMiseuk. poses of study. To such, say the statutes, 'a particular staMaand. room is allotted, in which they may read or write without

Regulation, . ..... 1 nr • > >

part ii, J 3. interruption during the time the Museum is kept open.

The aggregate number of persons admitted as visitors— ftr/a.""' excmsvve °f students—was, for some years, restricted to above. sixty persons, as a maximum, in any one day.

In order to give the reader a definite and clear idea of what was seen, in 1759, by the earliest visitors to the British Museum, in its rudimentary state, some sort of ground plan is essential, but the merest outline will suffice for the purpose.

There were at Montagu House two floors or stories of state apartments. The upper floor was that which was first shown, after the formation of the Museum.

The visitor, having ascended the superb staircase painted by La Fosse, passed through a vestibule and grand saloon {A B) furnished with various antiquities, into the 'Cottonian Library' (C), and thence into the 'Harleian Library,' which occupied three rooms (D, E, and F). He then entered the 'Medal Room'—containing the coins and medals of the Sloane and Cotton collections (G); the 'Sloane Manuscript Room' (H); and the room containing the chief part of the antiquities (7)—

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