St John's College MS O.58 (James 526)

The subscriptions of the officers, masters, and fellows of the University of Cambridge. English and Latin, 1823.


'The subscriptions of the officers, masters, and fellows of the University of Cambridge, made in conformity to the Act of Parliament passed in the 14th year of Charles II. Transcribed from the original books belonging to the said University by John Smith B.A. of St John's College, and deputy esquire bedell to the University.' Under the Act of Uniformity (1662), masters, fellows and officers at Oxford and Cambridge were obliged to subscribe to a declaration that they would not take up arms against the king, that they would conform to the liturgy of the Church of England, and that the Solemn League and Covenant was unlawful. Those who failed to do so risked being deprived of their offices. John Smith (d. 1870) was admitted to St John's in 1817 and took his BA in 1822. He served as deputy esquire bedell 1821-4 and subsequently entered the Church.

The names of the subscribers are listed by college and thereunder in chronological order from 1662 to 1718. The sixteen colleges are arranged in order of foundation. An index of the colleges is given opposite the title page. A note in the annotated James catalogue reads: 'p. 80 March 25 1662 Burton, Wilkinson, Stretton & Fern. All these became fellows 1672, so Smith must have entered them under 1662 by mistake.'

Manuscript extra information

210 x 165mm. 129 folios (text on the rectos only with very few annotations on the versos) + many blanks. Single neat hand throughout. Binding: 19th-century half binding of leather and marbled paper over boards; the paper shows text from a printed Bible beneath the marbling; all edges yellow.

19th-century college bookplate pasted inside front board.