ROGET, PETER MARK. 1779-1869. Autograph Manuscript of Roget's "Classification" or "Arrangement of Knowledge," 48 pp recto and verso, 8vo, blue paper-covered boards over later buckram spine, with manuscript titling piece, on paper watermarked 1799 and 1803, c.1805.<BR />
Lot 1150
ROGET, PETER MARK. 1779-1869. Autograph Manuscript entitled "Classification" and "Arrangement of Knowledge" [London, c.1805.]
Sold for US$ 35,000 inc. premium
Lot Details
ROGET, PETER MARK. 1779-1869.
Autograph Manuscript entitled "Classification" and "Arrangement of Knowledge" [London, c.1805.]
48 pp recto and verso, 8vo, blue paper-covered boards over later buckram spine, with manuscript titling piece, on paper watermarked 1799 and 1803.
Provenance: Peter Mark Roget; by descent to John Romilly Roget, sold by him at Phillips, Nov 12, 1992, lot 50.

ROGET'S "ARRANGEMENT OF KNOWLEDGE" WAS COMPOSED AT ABOUT THE SAME TIME AS HIS ORIGINAL THESAURUS AND ON MUCH THE SAME PRINCIPALS: IT APPEARS TO BE UNPUBLISHED, AND WAS UNKNOWN TO HIS BIOGRAPHER. It may have been begun just before the original thesaurus (the earlier gatherings having watermark dates of 1799, while Roget's manuscript thesaurus is watermarked 1802 and 1803). The "Arrangement of Knowledge" is an attempt to classify learning in the same way that the Thesaurus classifies words. The subjects are ordered under the headings and sub-headings on the contents leaf in three classes: "I. Physics or the Material World. II. Metaphysics, or the Intellectual World. III. Signs [Philology]." Each class is divided into sections, the sections into further sub-sections, etc.
As Donald Emblen wrote (with considerable prescience, when it is remembered that he did not know if the existence of this manuscript): "[Roget's] whole Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases (1852) was, of course, built upon a conviction that he had devised a useful and thorough-going system of classifying all human knowledge" (see his "Roget vs. Panizzi-A Collision," in The Journal of Library History 1969, 9-38, p 36). The "Arrangement of Knowledge" also has some relevance to Roget's work on the classification of the library of the Medico-Chirurgical Society (forerunner of the Royal Society of Medicine) and the library of the Royal Society, of which he was Secretary. His work at the Royal Society led to a long and vituperative row with Antonio Panizzi who had been engaged to catalogue the library; one of the points at issue being a list of seventeen classes drawn up for the library before Panizzi was engaged. As Emblen remarks: "since the subject of the altercation was then, and is now, of prime interest to librarians and scholars—namely, the problems of cataloguing; and finally, since the row may have left a deep imprint on the mold in which Panizzi was recasting the British Museum, it would seem that any new light thrown on the matter might be worth consideration" (p 9).
Armed with the "Arrangement of Knowledge" one can answer some of the furious questions which Panizzi threw at the Council, for example: "Under which of the seventeen heads, which I am instructed to adopt, am I to put books on acoustics?" (ibid p 15). The answer according to this manual is under class I ("Physics or the Material World"), part 2 ("Science of the laws of the Material World"), section 2 ("Natural Philosophy"), sub-section IV ("Acoustics"). Acoustics is divided into four further sections: "Simple Sound," "Continued Sound," "Combination of Sound," and "Applications," each of which is further itemized. Roget shows less decisiveness in other areas, the placement of Physiology, for example is deemed a section of zoology (part of Natural History) whereas it was apparently first listed as the third section of Science (both coming under the general class of Physics). What is classed as "Signs" on the contents leaf becomes "Philology" in the actual contents without further detail on individual languages or "bibliology."
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 Arms & Armor, Coins & Medals, Motor Cars, Motorcycles, and Wine & Whisky:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first $100,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from $100,001 to $2,000,000 of the Hammer Price
12% on the excess over $2,000,000 of the Hammer Price

Payment Notices

Payment for purchases may be made in or by (a) cash, (b) cashier's check or money order, (c) personal check with approved credit drawn on a U.S. bank, (d) wire transfer or other immediate bank transfer, or (e) Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover credit, charge or debit card. A processing fee will be assessed on any returned checks. Please note that the amount of cash notes and cash equivalents that can be accepted from a given purchaser may be limited.

Shipping Notices

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

Contacts
  1. Christina Geiger
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    Bonhams
    Work
    580 Madison Avenue
    New York, United States 10022
    Work +1 212 644 9094
    FaxFax: +1 212 644 9007
Similar items