Cambridge University: Address to Charles, 2nd Viscount Townshend

Scope and Content

An address by the University of Cambridge to Charles, 2nd Viscount Townshend, thanking him for his part in securing Bishop Moore's library for the University, 1715. There is a draft of Townshend's reply, an account of the expenses of foreign ministers of the British Crown, 1741, and an address from the University of Louvain to the University of Cambridge, 1919.

Administrative / Biographical History

Charles, 2nd Viscount Townshend (1674-1738), statesman, was the eldest son of Horatio, 1st Viscount Townshend, of Rainham, Norfolk. He was educated at Eton and King's College, Cambridge. He succeeded to the peerage in 1687, and took his seat in the House of Lords in 1697. Townshend was secretary of state, 1714-1717 and 1721-1730, after which he retired to his farm, where he worked on developing agricultural methods. He died at Rainham on 21 June 1738.

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

Access Information

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

Acquisition Information

Presented by Charles Fairfax Murray, 1917.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives. The biographical history was compiled with reference to the entry on Charles Townsend in Sidney Lee, ed., Dictionary of national biography, Vol. XIX (London, 1909), pp. 1036-1044, and the entry on John Moore in Vol. XIII (London, 1909), pp. 806-808.

Other Finding Aids

Additional Manuscripts Catalogue.