MS Hyde 66
Baretti, Giuseppe Marco Antonio, 1719-1789. Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti letters,
Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Call No.: MS Hyde 66
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Baretti, Giuseppe Marco Antonio, 1719-1789.
Title: Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti letters,
Quantity: 1 collection (.5 linear feet (1 box)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English, Italian, and Spanish.
Abstract: Letters from Italian writer Giuseppe Baretti to a variety of correspondents, often
addressing literary and political topics.
2003JM-58 (part). Bequest of Mary Hyde Eccles, Four Oaks Farm, Somerville, New Jersey; received: 2004.
Processed by: Rick Stattler
There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.
Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti Letters, 1762-1788 (MS Hyde 66). Houghton Library,
Several related items are also part of the Hyde Collection, including a letter from
Baretti to Hester Lynch Piozzi in MS Hyde 3, item (2); Baretti's 1775 accounting of
Samuel Johnson's expenses in France, MS Hyde 50, item (1); and six letters between
Baretti, Temple Henry Croker, and Henry Townsend in MS Hyde 79, items (1) and (2).
Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti (1719-1789) was a native of Turin, Italy. After beginning
his literary career in Italy, he removed to London in 1751. There he served as an
Italian language tutor, and soon became a member of Samuel Johnson's literary circle.
After publishing A Dictionary of the English and Italian Languages (1760), he returned to Italy for five years, where he courted controversy with his
literary periodical La Frusta Letteraria. He settled in London permanently in 1765. In 1769, he stabbed a man to death in a
street brawl, but was acquitted on the grounds of self-defense with the help of character
testimony from Johnson and other members of the Literary Club. From 1773 to 1776,
he served as a live-in Italian tutor in the home of Henry and Hester Thrale.
This collection consists of sixteen letters written by Baretti to a variety of correspondents.
The letters are written variously in English, Italian, and Spanish, and the content
is generally literary or political. Giambattista Biffi, item (1), and actor David
Garrick, item (5), are the most prominent correspondents. Many of the letters have
typescript transcripts or translations. The collection also includes Baretti's book
contract with George Robinson, apparently for Easy Phraseology for the Use of Young Ladies, item (7).
- (1). Biffi, Giambattista, 1736-1807, recipient. Letters from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, 1762-1763. 8s. in 1 folder.
Eight letters written in Milan and Venice, concerning social visits, travel, and a failed romance. The 1762 Oct. 24 letter describes
the suppression of Lettere Familiari ai suoi Tre Fratelli, and recommends Samuel Johnson's Rambler. The final letter, dated 1763 Dec. 24, describes the public reaction to La Frusta Letteraria di Aristarco Scannabue. In English.
- (3). Chambers, Robert, Sir, 1737-1803, recipient. Autograph letter, signed, London, from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, 1782 May 3. 9s. in 1 folder.
Detailed political letter. In English, with typescript transcript.
- (4). Chiaramonti, Giambattista, 1731-1796, recipient. Autograph letter, signed, Venice, from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, 1764 Mar. 3. 1s. in 1 folder.
- (6). Reed, Isaac, 1742-1807, recipient. Autograph letter, signed, Edward Street, Portland Chapel [London] from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, 1788 Mar. 17. 1s. in 1 folder.
Needs help from George Steevens in deciphering the handwriting of Samuel Johnson.
- (7). Robinson, George, 1736-1801. Autograph document, signed, London, 1774 Oct. 4. 1s. in 1 folder.
Contract for Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti to produce a volume of dialogues in English and Italian, probably his Easy Phraseology for the Use of Young Ladies. Signed by Baretti and Robinson. With Baretti's appended receipt for his advance, signed.
- (8). [Cosway], Maria [Hadfield, 1759-1838], recipient. 2 letters from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, 1784-1786. 8s. in 1 folder.
Recipient not known at time of cataloging but provided by reader from source: Savoia,
Francesca. Il Baretti vostro. Lettere inedited di Giuseppe Baretti. Verona, Italy: QuiEdit, 2013.
- Autograph letter, signed, Stanstead, Sussex (England), 1784 Nov. 22. 4s.
Describes his daily routine; reports that Wilton is not dead in a duel in India as feared. In Italian, with typescript English translation.
- Autograph letter, signed, No. 10 Edward Street, Portland Chapel [London] 1786 July 20. 4s.
Discusses his difficulty in writing in Spanish, and recommends a visit to Madrid. In Spanish, with typescript English translation.
- (9). Unidentified correspondent. Autograph draft letter, [no place] from Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, [ca. 1765] 4 leaves, bound with string, in 1 folder.
Draft of a public letter concerning the hostility shown to him by the Italian literati
in reaction to his La Frusta Letteraria di Aristarco Scannabue. Formerly in the Sir Thomas Phillipps collection, MS 7692.