no image
Lot 3
AUBREY, JOHN (1626-1697, antiquary and virtuoso, author of 'Brief Lives', F.R.S.)
Sold for £3,000 (US$ 5,078) inc. premium
Lot Details
AUBREY, JOHN (1626-1697, antiquary and virtuoso, author of 'Brief Lives', F.R.S.)

Footnotes

  • AUBREY SENDS BIOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH TO ANTHONY WOOD. Autograph material by Aubrey is extremely rare outside the Bodleian Library, particularly relating in any way to his work as a compiler of lives. Only two manuscripts by Aubrey have appeared at auction in the last thirty-five years at least.

    While the present notes evidently date from the period when Aubrey was providing research for Anthony Wood, primarily for his biographical work Athenae Oxonienses (with which these notes are clearly connected), the information provided here about the place of death of Sir Richard Napier ('Bessells-leigh in Barkesheire') could also have informed the biography of Sir Richard Napier which appears in Brief Lives, published 1696 (edited Andrew Clark, 1898): 'Sir Richard Napier is buryed at Lindford, but died at Besels-leigh.' Aubrey later acknowledged that it was Wood who had suggested the project which resulted in Brief Lives [though he did not use that title] ('a Taske that I never thought to have undertaken till you imposed it upon me') and that he made use of information gathered while assisting Wood with his projects.

    The question of Sir Richard Napier's status as a non-author answered in this manuscript is clearly linked with the letter from Aubrey to Wood quoted by Oliver Dick in the Introduction to his edition of Brief Lives (p. lvi): 'On Sunday last I dined with Mr. Ashmole, who bids me answer you POSITIVELY that Sir Richard Napier never did write anything and sayes that he haz [sic] acquainted you thus much before by letter.' In his edition of Brief Lives, Clark mentions two other letters, dated 1689, in which Aubrey and Ashmole were supplying information about Sir Richard Napier. In his edition of Wood's Life and Times, under a general heading 'memoranda in connection with the Athenae', Clark quotes a note by Wood that in March 1688/9 he wrote to Aubrey '(for) Georg Wild of Edmund Wild' and on 4 April 1688[?/9] that he sent by Aubrey to Ashmole about 'writings...of Sir Richard Napier' and '(to) Edmund Wild concerning judge George Wild' which are obviously associated with the present notes (Clark, The Life and Times of Anthony Wood, Oxford Historical Society, iii. p. 252). For the life of Dr Napier in Brief Lives, Aubrey was relying, as he told Wood (Dick, p. lvi), on Ashmole and it may have been among one of the later groups to have been written. The papers of Dr Richard Napier, then in the possession of Elias Ashmole, were of especial interest to Aubrey: both Napier and Aubrey were, as was the norm at the time, deeply interested in astrology, Aubrey collecting over 60 charts in his manuscript 'Collectio Genituarum' or 'collection of genitures' (See William Poole, John Aubrey and the Advancement of Learning, 2010).

    Edmund Wyld was Aubrey's patron and friend. Mr Kent may be the man to whom Aubrey sold Chalke Farm, his family home.

    Aubrey and Wood enjoyed a ragged friendship (like Hazlitt and Leigh Hunt). Wood once meanly described Aubrey as 'a shiftless person, roving and magotie-headed, and sometimes little better than crased. And being exceedingly credulous, would stuff his many letters sent to A.W. with fooleries, and misinformations, which sometimes would guid him into the paths of errour.' Wood used 'Aubrey as his main biographical consultant and fact-finder' (Poole).
Activities
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Customer Services (UK)
    Customer Services
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +44 20 7447 7447
    FaxFax: +44 20 7447 7401
  2. Books (UK)
    General Enquiries
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +44 20 7393 3828
    FaxFax: +44 20 7393 3879
  3. Shipping (UK)
    Logistics - Shipping
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +44 20 7468 8302
    FaxFax: + 44 20 7629 9673