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The Great War and The London Library

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For Remembrance Day 2014 Helen O’Neill, our Archive, Heritage & Development Librarian delves into the the Library’s history to consider the impact of the Great War on both staff and members of the Library. On July 30 1916 The Times reported that fifteen members of London Library staff were on active service. Arthur Edwin Davis was one…

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Claude Montefiore: A Cautious Revolutionary

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Claude Joseph Goldsmid Montefiore (1858-1938), great-nephew of Sir Moses Montefiore and grandson of Sir Isaac Lyon Goldsmid, was a member of the Anglo-Jewish elite who broke with Jewish orthodoxy when he founded Liberal Judaism in Britain. By The London Library’s Head of Bibliographic Services Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, adapted from an article originally written for History Today….

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Phrasebooks and Shipwrecks

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In the latest article adapted from a series recently published in History Today, Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, Head of Bibliographic Services at The London Library, reveals the remarkable and dramatic provenance behind a small volume contained in the Library’s collections, rescued from its watery resting place inside the wreck of cargo steamer S.S. Halcyon, which was mined and sunk…

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The Long, Long Trail: Charles Chilton, Tommy’s Tunes and Oh! What a Lovely War

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There is a small but significant book in the Library’s collections called Tommy’s Tunes: A Comprehensive Collection of Soldier’s Songs, Marching Melodies, Rude Rhymes, and Popular Parodies, Composed, Collected and Arranged on Active Service with the B.E.F., by F.T. Nettleingham, 2nd Lt. R.F.C.  This comprehensive collection of soldiers’ songs was collected and arranged while on…

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From Alfred Lord Tennyson to Cecil Day Lewis: a plethora of poets laureate

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Archive Advent calendar: 19 December Today we open another window on the Library’s archival advent calendar to find four poets laureate closely clustered in the membership records. Alfred Lord Tennyson was the Library’s President between 1885 and 1892 and was poet laureate from 1850 until his death.  He became laureate in the year In Memoriam was…

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Resuming London Library membership: Evelyn Waugh and Brideshead Revisited

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Archive Advent Calendar 18 December 2013 We join Helen O’Neill for today’s posting from the Library’s archive and open another small window onto the Library’s literary past with the joining form of the writer Evelyn Waugh (1903-1966). This is the second of Evelyn Waugh’s joining forms to the Library and dates from 1944. Waugh’s Library…

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Guilty by association: Aubrey Beardsley, John Lane and the Yellow Book

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Archive Advent Calendar 17 December 2013 The iconic fin de siècle illustrator Aubrey Beardsley (1872-1898) joined the Library in 1896 when he was 23 years old. Closely linked in the popular consciousness with Oscar Wilde, Beardsley’s iconic and risqué illustrations for Wilde’s illustrated edition of Salome were commissioned when he was just twenty-one and caused…

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Joseph Conrad and The London Library

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Archive Advent Calendar: 16 December 2013 We continue our archival countdown to Christmas by opening another window on the Library’s literary past with the joining form to the Library of the master mariner and master novelist Josef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski (1857-1924) – better known as Joseph Conrad. Conrad is without question one of the greatest…

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The Pre-Raphaelites and The London Library

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In the latest update from her adventures in the Library’s archives, our Head of Reader Services finds some wonderful Pre-Raphaelite connections. The painter Edward Burne-Jones and the writer, artist and designer William Morris were in the vanguard of the second generation Pre-Raphaelites who clustered round Rossetti. I am currently researching the Pre-Raphaelite network of friends…

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