Letters Collected by William Upcott

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 161 MSS. Don. d. 87-90
  • Dates of Creation
      17th-19th century
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      4 shelfmarks

Scope and Content

Letters of antiquaries, topographical writers and heralds, collected by William Upcott and arranged alphabetically in four volumes, A-C, D-K, L-P, R-Y, in 1835. Many of the letters are addressed to publishers and booksellers. The collection includes 70 engraved portraits and many printed proposals to publish antiquarian and topographical works.

Administrative / Biographical History

William Upcott (1779-1845) was an antiquary and autograph collector. 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 http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/specialcollections).

Acquisition Information

The letters were bought at Sotheby's in 1946 and given to the Library by the Friends of the Bodleian in 1947.


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. I, nos. 39049-52.


Some of the letters are printed in John Nichols, Illustrations of the literary history of the eighteenth century (London, 1817-58); all are published in microform, with an index, as part of The Upcott collection of literary autographs, 1765-1830 (Teaneck, N.J., 1975).