Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 53 pages of information about Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850.


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I do not know if such a notice as this is intended to be, is admissible into your publication.

Many years ago, I bought of a bookseller a MS. intitled “A Short History of the Legal and Judicial Polity of Great Britain, attempted by Thos.  Bever, LL.D., Advocate in Doctor’s Commons, and Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, 1759.”  It is presented to Richard Pennant, Esq.; and there is a letter from Mr. Bever to Mr. Pennant wafered to the fly-leaf.  At the close of the “Advertisement,” the author “earnestly requests that it [the work] may not be suffered to fall into the hands of a bookseller, or be copied, without his consent:  and whenever it shall become useless, and lose its value (if any it ever had) with the present owner, that he will be kind enough to return it to the author if living, or if dead, to any of his surviving family at Mortimer near Reading, Berks.”

In pious sympathy with this wish, I more than thirty years since wrote a letter, addressed to “——­ Bever, Esq., Mortimer, near Reading, Berks,” offering to give up the volume to any one entitled to it under the above description; but my letter was returned from the post office with the announcement “Not found” upon it.  I make this other attempt, if you are pleased to admit it, through you; and immediate attention will be paid to any claim which may appear in your pages.


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Can any of your readers inform me who was the author of The Valley of Vision, published in 1651 as the work of Dr. Richard Holsworth, the Master of Emmanuel College, and Dean of Worcester.  In a preface to the reader, Fuller laments “that so worthy a man should dye issulesse without leaving any books behind him for the benefit of learning and religion.”  He adds that the private notes which he had left behind him were dark and obscure; his hand being legible only to himself, and almost useless for any other.  The sermon published as The Valley of Vision appears to have been prepared for publication from the notes of a short-hand writer.  When Fuller published, about eleven years afterwards, his Worthies of England, he wrote thus:—­

“Pity it is so learned a person left no monuments (save a sermon) to posterity; for I behold that posthume work as none of his, named by the transcriber The Valley of Vision, a Scripture expression, but here misplaced....  This I conceived myself in credit and conscience concerned to observe, because I was surprised at the preface to the book, and will take the blame rather than clear myself, when my innocency is complicated with the accusing of others.”

If, as is probable, Dr. Holsworth, in this instance, preached other men’s sermons, which the short-hand writer afterwards gave to the world as his, it is a singular fact, that in the preface of this supposititious volume, Fuller speaks of the abuse of printed sermons by some—­

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Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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