Thursday, 15 March 2012

Dr William's Library and Thomas Hollis

Went to a seminar in Dissenting Studies at The Dr William's Library in Gordon Square I listened intently as Professor Allen Reddick, Head of the English Department at Zurich University went through the story of how Thomas Hollis, a wealthy dissenter of the 18th century came to donate so many rare books to this lovely library. His hero was John Milton and Hollis' career followed Milton's plan for moral and religious service.

He inherited not one but two vast fortunes and spent his life sending books to institutions always with a view of promoting the freedom of religious worship. When Harvard College suffered the loss of it's library after a fire he restocked it.

Professor Reddick spoke about the lovely bindings of the books and the inscriptions written inside.

The Dissenters are a subject in which I would like to extend my knowledge.

Medicine Man

If you haven't been to The Wellcome Trust to see the exhibition Medicine Man then you really need to go. The sheer scale of  the artifacts collected by Sir Henry Wellcome is represented well. Audio user guides take you through the stories they have to tell.

It's a pleasure to visit The Wellcome Collections building and I rejoined the History of Medicine library whilst I was there. Well worth a day out and it's free.