Papers on Italy and the Roman Catholic Church

Scope and Content

MS.Add.6612: 'Mmoires touchant les biens de l' Eglise, par Mr. Faure', written in French in a large thin sloping hand, 17th century, 710 folios (Faure may be Franoise Faure, Bishop of Amiens). A series of treatises upon the nature and authority of church councils, the property of the church, and the foundation of churches in various countries, copied or composed for private use: (fo. v) table of contents; (fo. 699) following colophon in the same hand as the rest of the book: 'finis de collationer le IV de fevrier 1718'. Inside the front cover is the name and bookplate of 'J. Lee, Colworth, 1827'; also 'B 8/4'. (fo. i) (in J. Lee's hand): 'In 1831 This manuscript was lent to the Bishop of Lincoln at Hartwell who returned it this day and informed me that it contains curious and interesting statements. That it appears to be a collection of tracts made by a bishop of the Roman Catholic Church for his private use, or collected under his direction. That chapter at page 243 Origine des Biens de l'Eglise is well composed. John Lee, Hartwell, July 9 1832'. On the remainder of a torn label at the foot of the back: '244/1'.

MS.Add.6613: Count Francesco dalla Torre, 'Relazione ossia Esame della serennissima Republica di Venezia', in Italian, possibly late 17th century, 107 folios. Fos 1v, 14v, and 103v-5 are blank. Inside the front cover: 'B6/7' (in pencil), (xix); 'J. Lee. Doctors Commons, 1829' (i.e. John Lee of Hartwell) and his bookplate. (fo. 1) 'From Archd. Coxe's Library WS' (xix) (i.e. William Coxe, Archdeacon of Wiltshire); (fo. 3v) 'No.5592. Mr. Strongs Catalogue. 1828. Bristol'. At the top of the back: 'MS 340'. At the foot of the back is the label '690'.

MS.Add.6614: Three tracts on the Corpus Christi Procession, 1696, in Italian, 18th century, 45 folios: (fo. 2) copy of a manifesto published in Rome by the Imperial Ambassador, the Count of Martiniz, justifying his conduct in the matter of an obligation undertaken at the time of the Corpus Christi Procession in Rome, 1696; (fo.7) copy of reflections upon the above (2nd hand); (fo. 20) blank; (fo. 23) copy of considerations upon the above reflections. On fos 2 and 42v is the stamp of the 'Biblioteca Colonna'. Inside the front cover: 'J. Lee Doctors Commons bound by Mr. Wilson' (i.e. John Lee of Hartwell). Fo. 1v: 'Bibliotheca' 'E 61' (xviii).

MS.Add.6615: Acta Synodi Provincialis Mechliniensis, 1574, in Latin, 18th century, 51 folios. Copy of the Acts of the Synod of Malines, held at Louvain May 1574. There is an elaborate title-page (fo. 2) with a pen-and-ink sketch of a city, harbour and galleys at the foot. On a fly-leaf at the front: 'from Messrs. H & S', 'J. Lee, Doctors Commons, 1828', whose bookplate appears below; 'A 3/7'. There is a label on the outside of the front cover: '510'.

MS.Add.6616: Acta Mechliniensia, 1574-1663, written in Italian in three hands, 18th century, 116 folios. Copies of the acts of a provincial synod and other congregations of the Province of Malines: (fo. 1v) list of contents; (fo. 2) first hand: acts of the provincial synod held at Louvain, May 1574; (fo. 28) blank; (fo. 30) acts of the congregation held at Antwerp, Sept. 1628; (fo. 41) blank; (fo. 42) acts of the congregation held at Brussels, Aug. 1630; (fo. 46) acts of the congregation held at the same, Aug. 1631; (fo. 54) acts of the congregation of deans held Aug. 1625; (fo. 57) blank; (fo. 58) acts of the congregation of archpriests, etc., held at Brussels, Aug. 1652; (fo. 66) second hand: proposals made by the Bishop of Ghent at a congregation held at Brussels, 1644; (fo. 98) third hand: acts and resolutions of the congregation held at Malines, Sept. 1663. (fo. 1) 'ex libris Gasparoli' (i.e. the Gasparoli family, Chevaliers, of Brabant) (xviiith). Front fly-leaf: 'Messrs. H.&S.' (xixth), 'J. Lee, Doctors Commons, 1828', whose bookplate appears inside the front cover. Labelled on the back in red: 'MS 19[6?]'.

Administrative / Biographical History

The collection was formed by John Fiott Lee of Hartwell (1783-1866), collector of antiquities and man of sciences. Lee was born on 28 April 1783, the eldest son of John Fiott, merchant of London, and of Harriet, second daughter of William Lee of Totteridge Park, Hertfordshire. He was educated at St. John's College, Cambridge, where he was fifth wrangler in 1806 (B.A., 1806; M.A., 1809; LL.D., 1816). On 4 October 1815 he assumed the name of Lee by royal license, under the will of his maternal uncle, William Lee Antoine of Colworth House, Bedfordshire. At the same time he acquired the estates of Colworth in Bedfordshire, Totteridge Park, and other lands. In 1827 he also inherited the estate of Hartwell in Buckinghamshire. Lee was one of Cambridge University's travelling bachelors, 1807-1810, making a tour through Europe and the East, during which time he collected objects of antiquity. On his return he resumed the study of law, and on 3 November 1816 was admitted to the College of Advocates, becoming its treasurer and librarian. He practised in the ecclesiastical courts until 1858. In 1863 he was admitted a barrister of Gray's Inn, and in 1864 became a Q.C. He was elected F.R.S. in 1831. Lee died at Hartwell House, near Aylesbury, 25 February 1866.

Access Information

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

Acquisition Information

Bequeathed by J.W.L. Glaisher, 1928.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives. The biographical history was compiled with reference to the entry on John Lee in Sidney Lee, Dictionary of national biography, Vol. XI (London, 1909), pp. 803-804.

Other Finding Aids

Additional Manuscripts Catalogue.

Alternative Form Available

A German version of MS.Add.6613 is printed in J.F. Le Bret, Magazin zum Gebrach der Staaten- und Kirchengeschishte, parts 1-4 (Ulm, etc. 1771-4), under the title 'Relation und Prfung der durchlauchtigsten Republik Venedig' by Graf Franz della Torre (alias Thurn-Valsassina).

Related Material

Cambridge University Library holds a letter from E. Tisserant (MS.Add.7339) relating to the subject covered in MS.Add.6614.


The tracts comprising MS.Add.6614 have not been printed. However, a reference to the incident in question is found in L. Pastors, Geschichte der Ppste vol. XIV, part 2, pp. 1150-1151.

Geographical Names