Bishop John Moore's Library: Treasury Order

Scope and Content

Order of the Treasury Commissioners for the payment of 6400 to Samuel Clarke, D.D., executor of John Moore, bishop of Ely, for the purchase of Bishop Moore's library, 24 October 1715, signed by Sir R. Walpole, Earl of Orford, D. Finch, Earl of Winchilsea, and T. Newport, Lord Torrington, 2 folios. The order is endorsed by the Earl of Denbigh and the Earl of Halifax. On fo. 1v is the receipt signed by Samuel Clarke, 9 November 1715, and witnessed by William Ireland. The order is accompanied by a letter from John Charles Fox to Francis Jenkinson, 11 October 1905.

Administrative / Biographical History

John Moore (1646-1714) was bishop of Norwich, 1691-1707, and of Ely, 1707-1714. His library contained 29,000 books and 1,790 manuscripts at his death, and was famous throughout Europe. It was sold to George I in 1714, who gave it Cambridge University, following the intervention of Charles, 2nd Viscount Townshend.

Moore's executor may be the metaphysian Samuel Clarke (1675-1729), who enjoyed the patronage of the bishop during his career, and was his chaplain. Clarke became bishop of Norwich in 1698, and was thereafter rector of Drayton, of St Benet's, Paul's Wharf, London (1706), and of St James', Westminster (1709).

Access Information

Open for consultation by holders of a Reader's Ticket valid for the Manuscripts Reading Room.

Acquisition Information

Presented by John Charles Fox, 1605.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives. The biographical history was compiled with reference to the entry on Bishop Moore in Sidney Lee, ed., Dictionary of national biography, Vol. XIII (London, 1909), pp. 806-808, and on Samuel Clarke in Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, eds, Dictionary of national biography, Vol. IV (London, 1908), pp. 443-446.

Other Finding Aids

Additional Manuscripts Catalogue.

Custodial History

The order was presented around 1840 to John Fox by one of his friends who found it in a fishmonger's shop in Hungerford Market intended for wrapping, the fishmonger having bought it with several tons of documents from the Treasury. It descended from Fox to his son John Charles Fox, of Kensington.


Corporate Names