Papers of Robert Finch

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 161 MSS. Finch b. 1, c. 1-3, d. 1-30, e. 1-21, e. 23, e. 24, e. 25-40, f. 1-7, g. 1
  • Dates of Creation
      12th-19th century
  • Language of Material
      English, Latin, Italian, French, and Arabic.
  • Physical Description
      81 shelfmarks

Scope and Content

Papers of Robert Finch, consisting of:  

  • Personal papers, including:  
    • Letters to Finch, arranged alphabetically by correspondent
    • Journals, 1813-18, written in Portugal, England, France, Italy, Greece and Turkey, giving detailed historical, architectural, archaeological and topographical accounts of places visited
    • Diaries, 1815-30, in a summary tabular form, written in Italy, Greece, Turkey and Switzerland
    • Seven commonplace books, ca. 1800-10, containing extracts and notes on classical, literary and antiquarian subjects, with copies of letters by Finch, and of Oxford University prize essays and poems, 1773-1804
  • Manuscripts collected by Finch, 12th-19th century

Administrative / Biographical History

Robert Finch (1783-1830) was an antiquary. Details are given in the Dictionary of National Biography.

Access Information

Entry to read in the Library is permitted only on presentation of a valid reader's card (for admissions procedures see


Collection level description created by Emily Tarrant, Department of Special Collections and Western Manuscripts.

Other Finding Aids

M. Clapinson and T.D. Rogers, Summary Catalogue of Post-Medieval Western Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library Oxford. Acquisitions 1916-1975. (Oxford, 1991), vol. II, nos. 46792-872.

Custodial History

Robert Finch bequeathed his plate to Balliol College and his library, pictures, coins and medals to the Ashmolean Museum. In 1918 it was agreed that his books and manuscripts should come to the Bodleian Library, with the exception of certain books in foreign languages and dealing with archaeology and fine arts, which were to go to the Taylor Institution and the Ashmolean Museum respectively. The manuscripts were transferred from the Taylorian to the Bodleian in March 1921.


Finch's personal papers were used by Elizabeth Nitchie in The Reverend Colonel Finch (New York, 1940).