Autograph of John Donne (1572-1631)

Almost lost among a riot of other scribbles and flourishes the autograph of John Donne, the metaphysical poet, appears in the bottom right-hand corner of the title-page to this edition of Ovid's Metamorphoses (Cambridge, 1584). The volume has obviously been through the hands of numerous schoolboys, and it is likely that Donne was among them, although the location of his signature on the title-page does correspond to his later practice. It has also been incorporated into a later inscription by a later hand so that it forms part of "Daniel Evans his booke wittnes Arthur Donne". For further details see Geoffrey Keynes, 'More books from the Library of John Donne', The book collector (Spring 1977).

Given by Francis Roper.