to the Grenville Library, the list of all its vellum books Book in, ought to be here inserted. As this cannot be done, some th"

Founder Of THE

only of the most remarkable shall be mentioned. These


are—the Greek Anthology of 1494; the Book of Hawking grrk"u-e

of Juliana Burners of 1496 ; the first edition of the Bible, known as the "Mazarine Bible," printed at Mentz about 1454 ; the Aldine Dante of 1502 ; the first Rationale of DuRandus of 1459; the first edition of Fisher On the Psalms, of 1508; the Aldine Horace, Juvenal, Martial, and Pelrarca, of 1501; the Livy of 1469; the Primer of Salisbury, printed in Paris in 1531; the Psalter of 1457, which supplies the place of the one now at Windsor, which belonged to the Royal Collection before it was transferred to the British Museum; the Sforziada, by Simoneta, of 1490, a most splendid volume even in so splendid a Library; the Theuerdank of 1517; the Aldus Gellius and the Vitruvius of Giunta, printed in 1515, &c. &c. Of this identical copy of Vitrivius, formerly Mr. Dent's, the author of the Bibliographical Decameron wrote, "Let the enthusiastic admirers of a genuine vellum Junta—of the amplest size and in spotless condition—resort to the choice cabinet of Mr. Dent for such a copy of this edition of Vitruvius and Frontinus." The Aulus Gellius is in its original state, exactly as it was Panizzi's when presented to Lorenzo De' Medici, afterwards Duke pZ°iilmlu, of Urbino, to whom the edition was dedicated.' asabove.



'Amidst tablets and stones, inscribed with the straight and angular characters of the Runic alphabet, and similar articles which the vulgar might have connected with the

exercise of the forbidden arts, were disposed, in

great order, several of those curious stone axes, formed of
green granite, which are often found in these Islands. . .
. . . There were, moreover, to be seen amid the strange
collection atone sacrificial knives . . . and the brazen
implements called Celts, the purpose of which has troubled
the repose of so many antiquaries/—The Pirate, c. xxviii.

(A Museum of Antiquities—not of one People or period
only, but of all races and all times—exhibits a vast com-
parative scheme of the material productions of man. We
are thus enabled to follow the progress of the Fine and
Useful Arts, contemporaneously through a long period of
time, tracing their several lines backwards till they con-
verge at one vanishing point of the unknown Past.'—

C. T. Newton {Letter to Col. Mure, 1853).

Scantiness of the Notices of some Contributors to the NaturalHistory Collections, and its cause.The . Duke of Blacas and his Museum of Greek and Roman Antiquities.Hugh Cuming and his Travels and Collections in South America.John Rutter Chorlky, and his Collection of Spanish Plays and Spanish Poetry.George Witt and his Collections illustrative of the History of Obscure Superstitions:The Ethnographical Museum of Henry Christy, and its History.Colonial Archaeologists and British Consuls: The History of the Woodhouse Collection, and of its transmittal to the

British Museum.Lord Napier and the acquisition of
the Abyssinian M8S. added in 1868.—The Travels of
Von Siebold in Japan, and the gathering of his
Japanese Library.Felix Slade and his Bequests,
Artistic and Archceological.

No reader of this volume will, in the course of its Book in,

perusal, have become more sensible than is its author of a Other

want of due proportion, in those notices which have occa- *TM*IT

sionally been given of some eminent naturalists who have EECraT

* ° Dais.

conspicuously contributed to the public collections, as compared with the notices of those many archaeologists and book-gatherers who, in common with the naturalists, have been fellow-workers towards the building up of our National Museum. I feel, too, that my own ignorance of natural ^"""or1' history is no excuse at all for so imperfect a filling-out of THE K0TICI

* t m L ° t OF NATUKA1

the plan which the title-page itself of this volume implies, Istsinthis I feel this all the more strongly, because I dissent entirely from those views which tend to depreciate the importance of the scientific collections, in order (very superfluously) to enhance that of the literary and artistic collections. Far from looking at the splendid Galleries of mammals, or of birds, or of plants, as mere collections of 'book-plates,' gathered for the 'illustration' of the National Library, or from sharing the opinion that the books and the antiquities, alone, are ' what may be called the permanent departments of the British Museum' (to quote, literally, the words of a publication* issued whilst this sheet is going to press, words which seem somewhat rashly—considering whence they come—to prejudge a question of national scope, and one which it assuredly belongs alone to Parliament to settle),

* A Handy-Book of the British Museum, for Every-day Readers.' 1870 (Cassell and Co.).


Book III,
Cliap. VI.



I regard these scientific collections as possessing, in common with the others, the highest educational value, and as also possessing, even a little beyond some of the others, a special claim, it may be, upon the respect of Englishmen.

That speciality of claim seems to me to accrue from the fact, that two of the early Founders, and one of the most conspicuous subsequent Benefactors of the Museum, were pre-eminently Naturalists. Such was Courten. Such was Sloane. Such was Sir Joseph Banks. I shall have erred greatly in my estimate of the regard habitually paid by a British Parliament to the memory of the eminent benefactors of Britain, if, in the issue, it do not become apparent that such a consideration as this will weigh heavily with those who will shortly—and after due deliberation and debate—have to decide pending questions in relation to the enlargement and to the still further improvement of the British Museum.

Be that however as it ultimately shall prove to be, if the Public should honour this volume with a favourable reception, it will be its author's endeavour (in a second edition) to supplement, by the knowledge and co-operation of others, the ignorance and the deficiencies of which he is very conscious in himself.

The Forma-
Tion Of
The New


British And

In resuming the notices connected with the now truly magnificent Collection of Antiquities, we have to glance at the organizing of a new 'Department' in the Museum. During at least two generations it has been, from time to time, remarked—with some surprise as well as censure—that the 'British' Museum contained no 'British' Antiquities. Sometimes this criticism has been put much too strongly, as when, for example, one of the recent biographers of Wedgwood thus wrote (in 1866, but referring also to a period then ninety years distant). 'At that Book in,

date, as at present, everything native to the soil, or pro- Oi'hek"

duced by the races who had lived and died upon it, was j*TM?'

repudiated by those who were the rulers of the National ^sg"T

Collection.' At that time, assuredly, there were already in Meteyara,

the Museum a good many British beasts, British birds, and LV' °fJ°s>ah

° J 1 'Wedgwood,

British books;—no inconsiderable part of the 'pro- voi.u,p.i62. ductions' of our soil and of the races born and nurtured upon it.

But, within a few months after the appearance of the criticism I have quoted, all ground for its repetition was removed by the formation of the 'Department of British and Mediaeval Antiquities and Ethnography.' It is thus organized, in six separate sections :—

§ I. British Antiquities anterior to the Roman period.
II. Roman Antiquities found in Britain.

III. Anglo-Saxon Antiquities.

IV. Mediaeval sculpture, carving, paintings, metal work, enamels,

pottery, glass, stone ware; and implements of various kinds, and of various material. V. Costumes, weapons, accoutrements, tools, furniture, industrial productions, &c.—both ancient and modern—of non-European races. VI. Pre-historic Antiquities* * Seethe

notice, hereafter, of the

To the enrichment of the fourth section of this new c'iri3ty


department of the Museum (in a small degree), as well as (much more largely) to that of the Classical Collections, the choice treasures gathered in France during two generations by successive Dukes of Blacas largely contributed.

The first of these Dukes, Peter Lewis John Casimir de The Blacas


Blacas, was born at Aulps in the year 1770. He was of a AND ITS family which has been conspicuous in Provence from the be- Isit'isro*' ginning of the .Crusades. Attaining manhood just at the eve of the Revolution, the Duke followed the French princes into

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