JOSEPH CRADOCK (1742-1826, man of letters and bibliophile)
A collection of papers and printed books, comprising: 1. An album of poems, most manuscript, the majority by Craddock and in his hand, others by friends such as John Nichols praising his mansion at Gumley, 4° (covers detached). 2. Manuscript of "The Czar", a tragedy by Craddock, in the author's hand, 86ll. on one side only, 4°, contemporary red straight-grained morocco, gilt (worn). 3. An album of letters, the majority to Joseph and Mrs Craddock from family friends, including the copy of a letter from R.B. Sheridan. 4. The second edition of Craddock's Memoirs (London, 1826, 8°), the Literary and Miscellaneous Memoirs of 1826 in 4 vols, 8°, both in contemporary calf bindings, and a printed copy of his tragedy, Zobeide (London, 1771).
Provenance: 1. and 3. Dobell, May 1948, cat. 101, no. 84/85, $91.80. 2. Sawyer, October 1962, cat. 262, no. 229., ¨15-0-0. Cradock, a devotee of the London stage, built his own mansion at Gumley in Leicestershire 'on a scale which led to embarrassment', gave private theatricals there, collected a fine library and amused himself with landscape gardening. His tragedy, Zobeide, modelled on Voltaire's 'Les Scythes', was performed at Covent Garden with success in 1771. 'In later years he was very intimate with John Nichols, the antiquary'. Finally forced to sell his estate and library, he retired to London, publishing his tragedy, The Czar, in 1824, which had got as far as rehearsal 50 years earlier. Its good reception induced him to publish his Memoirs, interesting for their recollections of Johnson and Goldsmith (cf. Compact DNB, p. 458).