St John's College U.64-5

A catalogue of the books bequeathed to St John's College by Thomas Baker. English and Latin, 1822.


'A catalogue of all the Books bequeathed to the Library of St. Johns College Cambridge, by the Rev: Tho: Baker B.D. sometime Fellow of that Society. Compiled by William Richardson B.A. Scholar of St Johns College. 1822.' The antiquary Thomas Baker (1656-1740) was a Fellow of St John's and gave many books, printed and manuscript, to the College Library, both during his lifetime and by bequest. The compiler of this catalogue, William Richardson (1794-1837) served as sub-librarian of the college from 1822.

The bulk of the catalogue (all of vol. I, and vol. II fos 1-51) describes the printed books bequeathed by Baker. These entries are arranged in chronological order, from 1475 to the 1730s, and are numbered from 1 to 1069. The bibliographical detail provided for the older books is particularly thorough, and any notes that Baker made in his books are carefully transcribed. After the catalogue of printed books there follows 'A Catalogue of the Manuscripts bequeathed to St. Johns College Library by the Rev. Tho: Baker B.D.' (vol. II, fos 55-61) which gives brief descriptions and class marks. The catalogue entries are followed by an 'Alphabetical index' (vol. II, fos 71-114), covering the printed books only, which gives brief bibliographical details and class marks. The catalogue ends with a 'Supplement containing rare & early printed Books in the Library of St. John's College some of which have belonged to the Rev. T. Baker' (vol. II, fos 115-141) which lists a further 82 items. A pencil note on the title page to vol. I gives the total number of volumes described as 'c. 1145', while Korsten puts the number of titles at around 1300. A biography of Baker from the Durham County Advertiser for 6 Dec. 1867, with the title 'The founder of the Baker Exhibition for Durham Scholars at St John's College, Cambridge', is pasted inside the front cover of vol. I.

Manuscript extra information

340 x 210 mm. 2 vols ([4], 183 fos; [1], 141 fos + blanks). Paper watermarked 1818, with margins ruled in red. Mostly written in Richardson's neat hand, with annotations by others, including John Spicer Wood (librarian c. 1861-82). Half binding of light brown leather and marbled paper over boards; gilt lettering on spines, 'Bibliotheca Bakeriana'.

Formerly shelved at 15.40. See also MS H.26.


Frans Korsten, A catalogue of the library of Thomas Baker (Cambridge, 1990) p. xxviii.