St John's College I.46 (568)

A collection of notes mostly relating to Richard Bentley. English, 19th century.


Richard Bentley (1662-1742), philologist and classical scholar, Master of Trinity College Cambridge (for whom see ODNB). It has been suggested that this collection was composed by Thomas Kidd (1770-1850), classical scholar and schoolmaster.


  1. f.i v. Autograph letter signed from the Bishop of London [Beilby Porteus (1731-1809)] to the Revd Mr Kidd, sent from St James's Square, 23 March 1802. 1p. Porteus does not have time to look into the accounts of the later Rector. Whatever is due to Kidd must be paid by the executors of Mr Bale i.e. his two brothers at Beverley. Promises to let Kidd know about the curacy as soon as he can. (Kidd was appointed to the rectory of St James Garlickhythe, London in 1802).
  2. f.ii-iii v. Miscellaneous notes relating to Bentley, including a transcript of a letter from John Rowning (1701?-71), fellow of Magdalene College Cambridge, to William Greaves, regarding Bentley's appointment as master of Spalding School, Lincs.
  3. f.1. 'An imitation of Horace book III ode 2 by Walter Titley Esq. to Dr Bentley.' English verse by Walter Titley (1698-1768). 'In addition to a number of original Latin verses, Titley wrote an 'Imitation' in English of the second ode of the third book of Horace; this was much admired by Bentley, who parodied it' (ODNB).
  4. f.1v. A note of Dr Johnson's opinion of Bentley's verse, taken from Boswell's Life. Also a copy of English verses written by Bentley in imitation of a passage in Cowley's 'verses for reason'.
  5. f.2. 'A reply to a copy of verses made in imitation of book III ode 2 of Horace. And sent by Mr Titley to Dr Bentley. By Dr Bentley.' In English.
  6. f.3-4. Extracts from the memoirs of John Evelyn for 1692 relating to Bentley. 3p.
  7. f.4v. 'Threnodia Academiae Cantabrigiensis in immaturum obitum illustrissimi ac desideratissimi principis Gulielmi Ducis Glocestriensis.' Latin verses composed by Bentley in 1700, when Master of Trinity College, on the death of William, Duke of Gloucester (1689-1700).
  8. f.5r-v. Two pages from a printed book, headed 'Appendix', comprising two Latin poems by Bentley, 'Ad reginam' and 'Allocutio ad sepulchram', with a short preface in English.
  9. f.7. 'Ad nobilissimum Carolum Halifaxiae Baronem.' Latin verses composed by Bentley, when Master of Trinity College, addressed to Charles Montagu, Earl of Halifax (1661-1715).
  10. f.8. A copy of Bentley's Latin epitaph to Roger Cotes (1682-1716) in Trinity College Chapel.
  11. f.9. A copy of Bentley's Latin epitaph to Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) copied from Nichols' Anecdotes.
  12. f.10. A Latin note relating to Bentley copied from Baker's MSS vol. 10, 11 p.284.
  13. f.11. A copy of Bentley's Latin epitaph to Sir Nicholas Pedley (d. 1685) in St Mary's Church Huntingdon, copied from Peck's Desiderata curiosa.
  14. f.12-13. A copy of Bentley's Latin epitaph to Edward Stillingfleet (1635-99) in Worcester Cathedral, copied from Ward's Lives of the professors of Gresham College.
  15. f.14v-15. Two pages from a printed book containing dedicatory verses to Isaac Newton by Edmund Halley, headed 'In viri praestantissimi Isaaci Newtoni opus hocce mathematico-physicum seculi gentisque nostrae decus egregium'. Begins 'En tibi norma Poli, & divae libramina Molis'. With manuscript annotations.
  16. f.15v-21. Anecdotes and information relating to Bentley drawn from various printed sources in English and Latin.
  17. f.21v. Copy of a letter from Bentley to John Evelyn (1620-1706), 21 April 1698. Regarding Bentley's refutation of Dr Bentley's Dissertations on the Epistles of Phalaris, and the Fables of Aesop, Examin'd.
  18. f.22r-v. Copy of a letter from Bentley to John Evelyn, 29 January 1694/5. 3p.
  19. f.23. Note about Peter the Great residing in John Evelyn's house.
  20. f.24. Note in English and Latin about Bentley's eyes, drawn from J.H. Monk's Life of Richard Bentley.
  21. f.25v-26. Various notes on Bentley drawn from Monk and Nichols.
  22. f.27. Copy of a letter from Bentley to Thomas Bateman, 27 January 1712/13. 2p. Also an anecdote from Encyclopaedia Britannica.
  23. f.28-30. Extracts relating to Bentley from Memoirs of Richard Cumberland.
  24. f.32. 'The Bp of Ely's sentence against Dr Bentley Mr of Trin. Coll.' Copied from Baker's MSS vol. 35 pp.447-8. The bishop was Thomas Greene (1658-1738). 4p.
  25. f.33r. Autograph letter signed from James Henry Monk (1784-1856) to an unknown recipient, sent from Cambridge, 10 April 1821. 4p. Regarding his projected life of Bentley, and posing several questions.
Manuscript extra information

285 x 225mm. 33 folios. Paper. Written in various 19th-century hands. Binding: half vellum and blue paper over pulpboard. A note on the spine reads ‘Bentlei opera ... carmina &c’.

This manuscript belonged to the classical scholar J.E.B. Mayor (1825-1910) and was given to St John’s College Library by his executor in 1910 (book label inside front board).