The Hartlib Papers

Title:Copy Extracts In Hand ?, John Dury To Hartlib
Dating:18 August 1646, 25 August 1646
Ref:1/15/1A-4B: 3B BLANK
Notes:Originals at 3/3/24 & 3/3/30, copy at 47/14.

             <another hand: of a library-keepers place>
                An Extract of Letters etc./
[left margin: cross inside circle]
Concerning the Librarie keepers place I understand that it is not of setled maintenance aboue 50 or 60 lib. but that accidents make it worth 100 at the most The only waye were <H: for> your Committee to move the house to settle a Competencie[H alters] upon the Library keepers place to make it worth 200 or more a yeere<H: ,> and beeing the Ornament of the Uniuersitie for the honour of the place and the encouragment of able and public spirited men to take paines in it<H: ,> for the settelment of it for the Common good they should bee moved to allow the mantenance with some Cautions added therunto<H: ,> which hee provided binding the said Librarie Keeper to some Aimes, which hee should prosecute vpon that allowance. I am sure that you, of your owne accord will doe more then yowr allowance will come to, for so you have alwayes done hitherto, and so are in straits for doing seruice to others: Therfore although it should bee allowed to you freely without any Capitulation, or Condition it would bee <noe> more then a recompense of what you have deserved & a iust incouragment to support you in the very <H: way> wherin you are; but if they should intend to Continue that allowance in after times upon any others<H: ,> then they should make this a Condition annexed to the bestowing of the place, that none should bee called thereunto, but such as had approved themselves Zealous and proffitable in some publicke wayes of Learning to advance the same; or that should be bound to certayne taskes to bee prosecuted towards that Ende<H: ,> wherof a Liste [must?] <H: might> bee made<H: ,> and the waye to try their abilties in prosecuting the same should bee described, least in after tymes vnprofitable men creep into the place to frustrate the public of the benefit [catchword: intended]

intended by the [honours?] <H: Donors> towards posteritie. The proper charge then of <H: a> Librarye keepere in an Vniversitie should bee thought upon<H: ,> & the End of that employment in my Conception<H: ,> is to keepe the publicke stocke of Learning, which is in bookes & manuscripts, to increase it, and to propose it to others in the way which may bee most usefull unto all; his worke then is to bee a factor and trader for helpes to learning, and a Treasurer to keepe them, and a dispenser to apply them to use, or to see them well used, or at least not abused. And to doe all this<H: ,> First a Catalogue of the Treasurie Comitted unto his charge is to bee made, that is all the Bookes and Manuscripts according to the titles wherunto they belong are to bee ranked in an order most easie & obvious to be found, which I thinke is that of sciences & Languages; when first all the Bookes are divided into their subjectam materiam<H: ,> wherof they treat, & then every kinde of matter subdivided into their severall Languages, And as the Catalogue should bee soe made<H: ,> that it may alwaies bee Augmented as the stocke doth encrease<H: ,> soe the place in the Librarie must bee left open for the encrease of the number of the number of Bookes in their proper seates, and in the printed Catalogue a reference is to bee made to the place where the Bookes are to bee found in their knowne shelves[H alters] or[H alters] repositories<H: .> When the stocke is thus knowne & fitted to bee exposed[H alters] to the view of the learned world. Then the waye of Trading with it both at home and abroad is to bee laid to heart<H: ,> both for the encrease of the stocke & for the improvment of it to the Vse. For the increase of the [catchword: stock]

the stocke both at home and abroad Correspondencie should bee held with those that are eminent in euery science to trade for <H: with> them for their profit<H: ,> that what they want & wee have they may receive upon condition<H: ,> that what they have and wee want they should impart<H: ,> in that facultie wherin there eminencie dothe lye. As for such as are of <H: at> home eminent in any kind, because they may come by Native right to have use of the Librarie treasure they are to bee Traded withall in another way vizt. that the thinges which are gained from abroad which as yet are not made Common and put to the Common <H: Publick> Use, should bee promised and imparted to them for the encrease <H: of their> private stocke of knowledge<H: ,> to the <H: end> that what they have peculiar may also bee given <H: in> for <H: a> requitall, [is?] <H: so> that the particularityes of gifts at home & abroad are to meete as in a Center in the hand of the Librarie keeper<H: ,> & hee is to trade both <H: with> the one by the other<H: ,> to cause them multiply the public stocke wherof hee is a Treasurer & Factor. Thus hee should Trade with those that are at home & abroad out of the Vniversitie; & with those that are within the Vniversitie hee should have acquaintance<H: ,> to know all[altered] that are of any parts, and how their veine of Learning dothe lye<H: ,> to supply helpes unto them in their facultyes from without and from within the Kingdome to put them vpon the keeping of Correspondencie with men of their owne straine, for the beating out of matters not yet elaborated in Sciences; so that <H: they> may bee as his assistants & subordinate Factors in[altered from on] his Trade & in their owne for[H alters] gaining of knowledge. Now Although I know that you will be indefatigable in this way & out runne yourself & all others as your wont is in this kinde, & so that which I am [catchword: to say]

to say will bee noe tye upon you to discharge your duty in the place<H: ,> yet because others that may follow in such a place may have need perhaps of some tye upon them to oblige them to carefullnes. I would have an Order made that once in the yeare the Library Keeper should bee bound to give an Account of his Trading and of his proffit in his Trade (as in all human Trades factours ought & use to doe at least once in a yeare) & to this effect I would have it ordered that the chiefe Doctors of each Facultie of the Vniversitie should meet of a Conuenient place and tyme in a weeke of the yeare to receive his Accompts of his trading, that hee may show them wherin the stocke of Learning hath beene encreased[altered] for that yeares space & then hee is to produce the particulars which hee hath gained from abroade & lay them before them all, that every one in [word deleted] <H: his> facultie may declare in the presence of others; that which hee thincketh fit to bee added to the publick stock & made Common by the Catalogue of Additionalls which euery yeare within the Vniversitie is to bee published in writting within the Librarie itselfe and every 3 yeares or sooner as the number of Additionalls may bee great<H: ,> or later if it bee small) to bee put in print and made Common to those that are abroad. And at this giving up of the Accompts, as the Docctors are to declare what they thinke worthy to bee added to the Common stock of Learning, each in their facultye, soe I would haue them see what the charges and paines are wherat [letter deleted] the Librarie keeper hath beene: that for his Incouragment his Extraordinarie Expences in Correspondencyes & transcriptions for the publicke good may bee allowed him out [catchword: of]

of some Revenues, which should bee sette a part to that effect, & disposed of according to their Ioynt Consent & Iudgement in that matter. Here then hee should bee bound to shew them the List of his Correspondents, the Letters from them in Answer to his, & the Reckoning of his Extraordinary Expences should bee allowed him in that which hee is indebted, or hath freely layd out to procure Rarities into the stocke of Learning. And because I understand that all stationers of the Kingdome are bound of euery booke which is printed to send a Copy unto the Vniversitie Librarye; & it is impossible for one man to read all the writtings and bookes in all facultyes to judge of them what worth there is in them, nor hath every one abilitie to judge of them what worthy there is in them all <kind of> sciences what every Author handles & how sufficiently Therefore I would have at this tyme of giveing accounts the Librarie keeper also bound to produce the Catalogue of all the bookes sent unto the Vniversitie Librarie by the Stationers that printed them; to the ende that every one of the Doctors in their owne facultyes should declare whether or noe they should bee added (& where they should bee placed in the Catalogue of Additionalls. For I doe not thinke that all bookes and Treatyes which in this age are printed in all kindes should bee inserted into the Catalogue & added to the stocke of the Librarie; discretion must bee used & Confusion avoided, & a Course taken to distinguish that which is profitable from that which is uselesse: & according to the verdit of the Society, the Vsefullnes of Bookes for the publick is not <to> bee determyned[H alters]; Yet because there is seldome any Booke wherin there is not something usefull & bookes freely given are not <to> bee cast awaye but are to bee kept. Therfore I would have a peculiar place appointed for such Bookes as shall bee layd aside to keep them in, & a Catalogue of their Titles made Alphabetically [catchword: in]

in refference to the Authours name; with a note of distinction to show the science to which they are to bee referred These thoughts are thus suddenly come into my head, which in due tyme I shall bee willing more fully to elaborate if need bee Chiefly if upon the ground of this motion a competencie should bee allowed unto you, for to maintayne the Charges you will bee at in prosecuting the public good of Learning after this manner & also support you Comfortabley in taking the paines which you will bee at in soe doing. I speake nothing now of other Aymes & wayes of advancing Virtue and Godlines<H: ,> Peace & Truth in the Church & in <H: the> Schoole, the education of the younger sort<H: ,> & how your place there may bee subservient thereunto if God send you thither it will bee then tyme to take this into Consideration which I shall not fayle to doe if god give life and health whether I am appointed to be with you in a station there or noe. Let us for the present thinke of this dayes worke and sufficient is every day for the worck therof. I am for the present at this dayes worcke<H: ,> which in the begining I have mentioned; but I am fallen upon the worcke which is proper to you in your sphere, to helpe you what I can in it, & I beseech the Lord to direct us to improove all our Tallents in due tyme to his glory & to bee found reddie at all calls to imploy them for the good of others cheerfully.
In my Last I gave you some incident thoughts concerning the Improovment of an Honourary[altered] Library-Keepers place at Oxford to show the true End [catchword: and]

and use thereof and how the keeper thereof should bee regulated in the Trade, which hee is to drive for the Advancement of Learning, and encouragd[H alters from encouragment] by a Competent Maintenance<H: ,> & supported in Extraordinary Expences for the same. Now you wish that Mr. Rous who is Chairman of the Comittee for Oxford were furnished with a discourse such as then I did begin to delineat. I know that Mr Rous is a man of an exact Iudgment and parts beyond many, and a great Lover of Learning, if the Motion bee but made unto him upon such grounds as have beene briefly suggested, I make noe doubt but he will bee able and willing also to enlarg it towards the Houses