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MS Hyde 40

Murphy, Arthur, 1727-1805. An essay on the life and genius of Samuel Johnson, LL.D., extra-illustrated: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: Hyde Case 9
Call No.: MS Hyde 40
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Murphy, Arthur, 1727-1805
Title: An essay on the life and genius of Samuel Johnson, LL.D., extra-illustrated,
Date(s): 1788-1844.
Quantity: 1 collection (.08 linear feet (60 items inserted into 1 volume)
Abstract: Manuscripts and prints inserted by W. Dorset Fellowes into Arthur Murphy's An Essay on the Life and Genius of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. (London: T. Longman et al, 1793), mostly comments on the text by Fellowes, and also letters and notes by Hester Lynch Piozzi.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

2003JM-159. Bequest of Mary Hyde Eccles, Four Oaks Farm, Somerville, New Jersey; received: 2004.

Custodial History:

Bookplate of [William] Dorset Fellowes (1769-1852); stamped by the Academy of Our Lady of Lourdes, New York City; gift of C.W. Force to Ralph Heyward Isham, 1943; sold by Isham to Mary Hyde, 1980 Mar.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Rick Stattler

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

An Essay On the Life and Genius of Samuel Johnson, LL.D., Extra-illustrated, 1788-1844 (MS Hyde 40). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

William Dorset Fellowes (1769-1852), who extra-illustrated this volume, was a friend of author Hester Lynch Piozzi during the last years of her life, and is mentioned frequently in her correspondence from 1815 onwards. His brother Sir James Fellowes was also a friend of Piozzi's, and served as her literary executor upon her death in 1821.

Scope and Contents

Most of the manuscripts pasted into this volume are notes by William Dorset Fellowes responding to text of Arthur Murphy's An Essay on the Life and Genius of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. Some of Fellowes's comments incorporate anecdotes told to him by Hester Lynch Piozzi concerning Samuel Johnson and his circle. These anecdotes were apparently committed to paper long after Piozzi's death. In addition to his own notes, Fellowes incorporated other collected manuscript material into the volume: three short letters addressed to Peter Burrell, Baron Gwydir (1754-1820), mostly concerning tickets to the trial of Warren Hastings (1732-1818), pages 97, 101, and 191; and six items by Piozzi. Most of the Piozzi items are short notes and letters in her own hand, preceding the title page; perhaps most significant is her poem Nothing, page 175, transcribed by Fellowes from a manuscript which he reported as lost in a fire.
Also listed are fourteen etchings and engravings inserted into the text, mostly portraits of Johnson's extended circle, and three political caricatures.
This volume also has newspaper clippings inserted that are not listed in this finding aid.

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