Chinese and other oriental books, manuscripts, and papers of Theophilus Bayer, 1694-1738, sinologist

Scope and Content

A collection of Chinese and other oriental books and manuscripts, including palmleaf books in Tamil and Telugu, notes on oriental history and philology, and correspondence with the Jesuits in Peking (now Beijing), China, collected or transcribed by Theophilus Bayer

Administrative / Biographical History

Theophilus Gottlieb Siegfried Bayer (1694-1738), was a sinologist, and Professor of Greek and Roman Antiquities at St Petersburg Academy of Sciences, Russia, between 1726-1738 . His library was sold by his widow to Heinrich Walter Gerdes (d. 1741), a Lutheran pastor in London, England. It was subsequently purchased from Mrs Gerdes by William Hunter (1718-1783) the London-based anatomist and obstetrician, and incorporated into his collection of manuscripts and books.


The arrangement of this material reflects the original order in which it was received

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Gift : William Hunter : December 1807 : ACCN 2523

Other Finding Aids

Item level descriptions are available via the department's online manuscripts catalogue available at searching by the call number MS Hunter B

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Archivist's Note

Compiled by David Powell, Hub Project Archivist, 8 March 2002

No alterations made to date

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Head of Special Collections

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use & condition of documents

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 247 procedures

Custodial History

Under the terms of William Hunter's will, his library and other collections remained in London for several years after his death - for the use of his nephew, Matthew Baillie (1761-1823) - and finally came to the University of Glasgow in 1807. After Matthew Baillie's death in 1823 other papers were sent to Glasgow by his widow. Some papers known to have existed are now lost. The collection was initially housed in the Hunterian Museum and fully incorporated in Glasgow University Library after 1968.


None expected

Related Material

GB 247 MS Hunter: Papers and manuscripts from the library of William Hunter

GB 247 MS Hunter D: Papers of James Douglas

GB 247 MS Hunter H493-H509: Papers of Helen Brock relating to her research on William Hunter


Knud Lundbaek , .S. Bayer (1694-1738) : pioneer sinologist, (London, 1986)

Geographical Names