BRIDGEWATER HOUSE -- John Payne COLLIER. A Catalogue, Bibliographical and Critical, of Early English Literature forming a portion of the Library at Bridgewater House, the Property of the Rt. Hon. Lord Francis Egerton, M.P. London: [Privately Printed by F. Shoberl, Jun.], 1837.
4o (280 x 212 mm). Contemporary half green morocco over red boards, uncut (front cover detached). Provenance: Harriet Elizabeth Georgina Levison-Gower, Duchess of Sutherland (presentation inscription, bookplate).
LARGE-PAPER, WITH PRESENTATION INSCRIPTION FROM EGERTON TO THE DUCHESS OF SUTHERLAND. "The famous Bridgewater library...was started about 1600 by Sir Thomas Egerton, Baron Ellesmere and Viscount Brackley (1540?-1617)... His son, the first Earl of Bridgewater, considerably increased the library... When the third Duke of Bridgewater died unmarried in 1803, his collections passed to his nephew the... first Duke of Sutherland, who died in 1833, leaving them in turn to his second son, Francis Leveson-Gower. The latter then assumed the patronymic of Egerton and, in 1846, was raised to the peerage as Earl of Ellesmere. About 1800 the library was rearranged by the Rev. Henry John Todd... A later librarian was the notorious forger and Shakespeare scholar, John Payne Collier, who fraudulently altered a number of documents in the Bridgewater muniment room and printed in 1837 a catalogue of some of the rarer books in the library" (De Ricci, pp.17-18). In 1917 the library, including the manuscripts and family archives, was sold to Henry E. Huntington and is now at San Marino.