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Revived, Kidnapped, Rescued, and Rebuilt: Canterbury Cathedral Library in the Seventeenth Century

Tuesday, June 18, 2013 - 5:15pm

Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library
121 Wall St., New Haven, CT 06511

Keynote lecture by David Shaw
for the current exhibition
Permanent Markers: Aspects of the History of Printing


Following the dispersal of the great monastic library of Canterbury Christ Church Priory in the sixteenth century, Dean Isaac Bargrave initiated a revival of the Cathedral's library in 1628. The library was seized by Parliamentary commissioners in 1650 and taken off to London, but was returned in 1662 following the restoration of the monarchy. A new library building was erected to house it and the collections were increased by significant benefactions and acquisitions.

David Shaw studied at the University of Sheffield (England) where he received a BA and PhD in Latin and French. He taught at the University of Kent (Canterbury, England) until 2002, where he is currently an Honorary Senior Research Fellow, and then worked as the Secretary of the Consortium of European Research Libraries for eight years.

His main research has been on the history of the book in fifteenth- and sixteenth-century France and more recently on the history of ecclesiastical libraries in Kent. He was the Editor-in-Chief of the Cathedral Libraries Catalogue project, published by the Bibliographical Society and the British Library (1985, 1998), for which he was awarded a DLitt (Cantuar) by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 2004.

He is a former President of the Bibliographical Society (London) where he is currently Honorary Editor of Monographs. He is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Canterbury Archaeological Trust. In his spare time he plays renaissance music (curtal, shawm, recorders, etc.).

Reading & Lecture
50th Anniversary

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Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library
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