GRENVILLE, Thomas (1755-1846) -- John Thomas PAYNE and Henry FOSS. Bibliotheca Grenvilliana; or Bibliographical Notices of Rare and Curious Books, forming part of the Library of the Right Hon. Thomas Grenville. London: Printed by William Nichol, 1842. 2 volumes. -- Bibliotheca Grenvilliana Part the Second, completing the Catalogue of the Library bequeathed to the British Museum by the late Rt. Hon. Thomas Grenville. London: Printed by Order of the Trustees, 1848. -- William Brenchley RYE. Bibliotheca Grenvilliana; Part the Third, completing the Catalogue of the Library... With a General Index. London: Printed by Order of the Trustees, 1872.
Together 4 volumes, 8o (238 x 145 mm). Vol. 4 with photographic frontispiece of Grenville's marble bust. Bound ca 1872 by Francis Bedford for Algernon George Percy in polished calf gilt, sides with Percy arms in gilt surrounded by the mottos "Honi soit qui mal y pense" or "Esperance en Dieu" within a roundel surmounted by a ducal coronet, spines richly gilt, red and olive morocco lettering pieces, edges gilt (a few joints tender, some minor wear at extremities). Provenance: Algernon George Percy, 6th Duke of Northumberland (1810-1899, binding, bound in at front of vol. 4 is an ALS by J. Richard Jones, Principal Librarian of the British Museum, presenting the volume, on behalf of the Trustees, to Northumberland); Alan G. Thomas (bookplate, his sale Sotheby's London, 22 June 1993, lot 413).
A fine copy of the catalogue of the Grenville Library. "With the exception of the Collection of His Majesty George the Third, the Library of the British Museum has never received an accession so important in every respect as the Collection of... Thomas Grenville" (Sir Anthony Panizzi, 1847, quoted by Fletcher). "Grenville, after a brilliant parliamentary career, retired from public life in 1818 and devoted himself entirely to his books. He was a true bibliophile, in the highest sense of the word... When he died he left his library to the British Museum... He had fine books of every description... early Americana... Aldines, early Spanish and Italian books (Dante, Petrarch and Ariosto), classics... books on Ireland and lastly incunabula on vellum... His catalogue...is a lasting monument..." (De Ricci). (4)