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Regents Park College Oxford

The Angus blog

Project Administrator wanted

Posted Friday, 11th January 2013

Regent’s Park College (RPC), a Permanent Private Hall of the University of Oxford, has a full-time, 3 year, grant- funded position for a Project Administrator. RPC has recently secured funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and Baptist Union’s Newington Court Trust to deliver an exciting project which will enable The Angus Library and Archive (The Angus) to reach a wider audience resulting in greater participation.
We are therefore looking to recruit an enthusiastic, highly organised and motivated person to fill this varied and interesting post. This position will provide administrative support for the newly developed outreach project, alongside providing office management and administrative support for The Angus, in particular the College Librarian. Experience with HLF projects would be an advantage.
For more information regarding this position or to request an information pack please contact the College Librarian, or (01865)288142.

Closing date is 5pm 25th January 2013. Interviews will be held on the 30th January 2013.

For the Job description please click here





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Let the fun begin!

Posted Monday, 7th January 2013

Well 2013 is here which means the start of our exciting new project.

Thank you everyone for your congratulations it has been a long road thus far but now the fun starts.


The news has spread and has been reported in the news section of the National Archives website and in the online denominational newsletter Baptist Times.

We are continuing to promote our successful grant application and would be happy to talk with anyone further about it.

So the work begins

The first steps to be taken are the setting up of the project with much of the activities beginning in a few months time.

The key tasks that will be initially undertaken will include the appointment of the Project Administrator and also the first meeting of the Project Board.

New Position
The Project Administrator will be a full time position what will provide admin support for the project and also The Angus, this is a crucial role in ensuring the smooth running of the project.

We expect to advertise this position this week and information will be posted on the blog once this has happened so stay tuned.

Once again thank you for all your well wishes, please check back to the blog often as we will be updating it regularly now that the project has begun.

Best wishes to all for 2013.


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The Angus secures HLF Funding

Posted Tuesday, 18th December 2012

Oxford’s Regent’s Park College has received £488k from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and The Baptist Union Newington Court Fund (BUGB) to provide opportunities for people to learn about the important part Baptists played in the history of the United Kingdom and the world. The project will also safeguard this unique and important part of nation’s heritage.

This funding will enable us to catalogue, conserve and provide opportunities for more people to learn from and participate in the heritage contained in the collection in the following ways:.
  • Write and distribute image rich lesson-starters and in-depth teaching resources for young people studying history at Secondary School (KS3 and 4)
  • Work with IntoUniversity to develop year 10 and 11 Archive Taster Sessions to enable students from disadvantaged backgrounds aspiring to go to University to learn how to use a range of original documents in a archive setting

  • Hold biennial lectures and exhibitions linked to national events like Fair Trade Fortnight, Black History Month and International Women’s Day

  • Fully catalogue the collection and make it searchable online

  • Digitise the BMS World Mission missionary paper archives and make them available online

  • Work with churches to run a programme of training courses which will highlight the need for simple best practice archiving of church records and artefacts so that these important documents are preserved for future generations

  • Run courses on writing church histories so that congregations can record their histories and tell the story of their church

We will recruit and train volunteers as part of delivering all these exciting activities and if people are interested in getting involved in the project they should contact Emma Walsh, College Librarian.


Emma Walsh, College Librarian at Regent’s Park College

“This grant will help us to realise the dream of helping more people discover and engage with the unique riches that are held in The Angus. 400 years ago the first Baptist community settled in Spitalfields, London. It is exciting that in the year that this anniversary has been celebrated we can start a new phase of helping people engage with another aspect of the nation’s shared history”


Dr Robert Ellis, College Principal

“We are privileged to have The Angus Library and Archive at Regent’s Park College where it can be accessed alongside the unrivalled resources of the University of Oxford. The College’s Governing Body is delighted that the HLF and BUGB are enabling us to further improve accessibility to and awareness of its unique contents.

These grants are essential if the College is to ensure the collection is catalogued, conserved and that access to it is extended. However, funding for higher education has never been more precarious and The College’s reliance on donations from alumni, friends and churches remains.”



Stuart McLeod, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund South East, said:

“Saving our historic archives is so important – they are a valuable resource for anyone wanting to explore their past. The Angus is bursting with stories and facts that give us clues as to what Baptist life was like and how that has shaped us into what we are today.”

Further Information:

If you’d like more information, or to schedule an interview with Emma Walsh, College Librarian please call 01865 288142 or email

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New Testament in Syriac (1555)

Posted Wednesday, 18th July 2012

[Title in Syriac] Liber sacrosancti evangelii de Iesu Christo … In urbe Viennae … hoc opus anno a Christi nativitate MDLV [1555] XXVII Septembris Regiis impensis. Caspar Craphtus Elvangensis suevus characteres Syros ex norici ferri acie sculpebat. Michael Cymbermannus prelo et operis suis excudebat. [I.488] (Darlow & Moule 8947)

The first book printed in Syriac and the editio princeps of the New Testament in this language, printed in Vienna in 1555. It was edited by Johann Albrecht Widmanstadt (1506-1559) with the aid of Moses of Mardin, a scribe in the service of the Patriarch of Antioch, and dedicated to Ferdinand, King of Hungary and Bohemia, Archduke of Austria and Duke of Burgundy, at whose expense the work was published. Although ostensibly for Syriac-speaking Christians who were in need of a New Testament in their language, it was created partly as a missionary tool to convert Jews and Muslims in the East. It was also the product of a sixteenth-century humanistic interest in the Orient in response to the rising threat of the Ottoman Empire and the desire to go back to the roots of the Bible. According to Widmanstadt in his dedication to Ferdinand, who succeeded Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor in 1558, more scholars were able to read Hebrew and Chaldean than ever before, which went a long way to undo the linguistic dispersal after the Babel episode. This edition had a print-run of 1000 copies of which 300 were given to Moses to take to the Patriarch of Antioch. A second edition was produced by Michael Zimmermann (Cymbermannus) in 1562, after obtaining imperial licence to use the Syriac type.[1]It is mentioned in the 1611 English King James version as being in ‘most learned men’s libraries’ in the translators’ note to the reader.

This copy was given to the Baptist Union by J.B. Sherring, who possibly inherited it from R.B. Sherring. It carries a Baptist Union Library bookplate, covering an older plate, and a note that Dr. Whitley gave the volume to Henry Wheeler Robinson. When Wheeler Robinson’s library was transferred to Regent’s Park College in 1945, it came to the Angus Library. It has a distinguished provenance in that it appears to have come from the library of the Duke of Sussex, i.e. Prince Augustus Frederick (1773-1843), sixth son of King George III and Queen Charlotte. According to the ODNB:

He supported the progressive political policies of his time, including the abolition of the slave trade, Catholic emancipation, the removal of the civil disabilities of Jews and dissenters, the abolition of the corn laws, and parliamentary reform.

Augustus Frederick was a great patron of the arts and sciences. He was elected president of the Society of Arts in 1816, and between 1830 and 1838 served as president of the Royal Society. He resigned from this post to concentrate his expenses on his not insignificant library, which contained c. 50,000 volumes, including about 1000 Bibles.[2]This library was sold in stages after the Duke’s death in 1843 by the auctioneer R.H. Evans, who had also presided over the famous Roxburghe sale of 1812.[3]

[1] R.J. Wilkinson, Orientalism, Aramaic and Kabbalah in the Catholic Reformation : The first printing of the Syriac New Testament. Leiden: Brill, 2007. Ferdinand has been elected Emperor designate in 1531.
[2] T. F. Henderson, ‘Augustus Frederick, Prince, duke of Sussex (1773–1843)’, rev. John Van der Kiste, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 6 July 2012 ]
[3] D. Pearson, Provenance research in book history. London: British Library & Oak Knoll, 1998, pp. 148-9.
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New Testament in “Englyshe”

Posted Tuesday, 19th June 2012

The Newe Testament of our saviour Jesu Christe faythfully translated out of the Greke … [Colophon: Imprynted at London by Rycharde Jugge, dwellynge in Paules churche yarde at the signe of the byble. Vvith the kynge his mooste gratious lycence, and privilege, forbyddynge all other men to print or cause to be printed, this, or any other Testament in Englyshe, [1552]]
This is the final page of the New Testament in English, edited from the Tyndale version and printed by the London-based printer and bookseller Richard Judge or Jugge (d. 1577), who had his workshop in St Paul’s churchyard. The text is a colophon giving Judge’s details and it refers to the licence he was given by King Edward VI (whose portrait appears on the title page) to print the New Testament in English. Above the colophon, Judge’s printer’s device is prominently displayed: in the medallion is a pelican feeding her children by pecking her chest (a well-known symbol of Christ), flanked by two women representing prudence and justice.

The publication itself is characterised by the use of large woodcuts and decorated initials. The Angus Library has two copies, but both have suffered damage over time. 
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A leading female book collector

Posted Thursday, 7th June 2012

The early nineteenth century was a period of feverish book collecting among the well-to-do in Britain and the rest of Europe. One important collection of books in England was that of a lady called Frances Richardson Currer of Eshton Hall in Yorkshire.
Thomas Dibdin, Earl Spencer’s librarian at Althorpe, thought she was the most important female book collector in Europe – not that there would have been that many! She also owned a substantial art collection and was a generous patron of local institutions.
The core of the collection at Eshton was formed by the botanical and historical books of Frances’ great-grandfather, the physician and botanist Richard Richardson (1663–1741). A catalogue made in the life-time of Frances Currer reveals her interest in works on religion. She never married and after her death in 1861, her library (consisting of an estimated 20,000 volumes) was sold by her heirs. The main sale, at Sotheby’s on 30 July 1862, raised about £6000. At a second sale, in 1916, more than £3700 was made. As a consequence, Currer’s books can be found all over the world, including one here at the Angus Library.

Perhaps not surprisingly, given the nature of the Angus, it is a history of the Reformation written by Daniel Gerdes (mentioned in the 1833-catalogue of Currer’s collection), published in the Dutch town of Groningen in 1744.

The reason we can be reasonably certain that this was Frances Currer’s copy of Gerdes’ work is that it has her bookplate pasted in at the front of the volumes (Franks 7624). The college at Regent’s Park did not immediately buy the work when it was up for sale but, according to the note on the bookplate, was entered into the collection a few years later.
Which contemporary female author from Yorkshire used some of Frances Currer’s name as part of a pseudonym?
A catalogue of the library collected by Miss Richardson Currer, at Eshton Hall by C.J. Stewart. London: printed for private circulation only, MDCCCXXXIII [1833], p. 63
Franks bequest: a catalogue of British and American book plates bequested to the Trustees of the British Museum by Sir Augustus Wollaston Franks (1903)
Colin Lee, ‘Currer, Frances Mary Richardson (1785–1861)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [, accessed 31 May 2012]

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We are linked….hopefully

Posted Wednesday, 23rd May 2012

As can been seen from the posts below, today we have been connecting the various social media sites that we have for The Angus.

And I think, hope, we have cracked it so now you can click on the various widgets in the side panels and

  • Follow us on Twitter @RPC Library, or
  • Friend us on Facebook, or
  • RSS us on the blog

Here’s hoping it works!


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    Test twitterfeed

    Posted Wednesday, 23rd May 2012

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    Test links

    Posted Wednesday, 23rd May 2012

    Test dlvr it links

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    A Rare and interesting book

    Posted Monday, 21st May 2012

    Josse van Clichtove, De vita et moribus sacerdotum opusculum … secunda emissio. Parisiis: Ex officina Simonis Colinaei, 1520 (USTC 145230).

    A Flemish theologian, Josse van Clichtove (d. 1543) was a prolific author and editor. Already as a student in Paris, he was interested in monastic reform and pastoral theology. One of his aims as an editor was to promote the works of the Christian Fathers to a wider audience and he gained a reputation as an authoritative theologian, with leading humanists such as Jacobus Wimpfeling and Beatus Rhenanus showing great appreciation for his learning. He was a firm opponent of Martin Luther’s ideas and critical of his contemporary Erasmus of Rotterdam. Initially a firm critic of current sacerdotal practices, in later life Clichtove focused his attentions more on attacking the rise of Lutheran theology.

    This work here sets out Clichtove’s ideas about the proper behaviour and duties of the priest. The first edition of this work was published in 1519 with a pictorial title page by Henri Estienne the Elder (d. 1520), the founder of a distinguished line of printers, who printed a number of Clichtove’s works in the 1510s.

    Henri the Elder’s widow married Simon de Colines, Estienne’s assistant, who published this second edition in 1520. Only two earlier editions which bear Colines’ name are now known to survive. The first dated edition under Colines’ supervision was a Greek translation of Cato’s Distichs, printed in 1518 (USTC 160484). Another work by Clichtove, a tract on the duties of the king, was printed by him in 1519 (USTC 186848).

    The title page of this 1520 edition is very plain compared to the first edition (USTC 145034) – for an image of the title page, have a look here.

    It is one of the oldest works in the Angus Library, but it is not entirely clear when it was added to the collection. A handwritten note on the back of the front cover describes the work as ‘tres rare’ (i.e. very rare) in 1786 when it was bought at the sale chez ‘le duc de la Valliere’ in Paris. It is described on USTC as a quarto, which may mean that the Angus Library copy was quite heavily cut down to resemble an octavo when it was rebound in the eighteenth century.

    Contemporaries of Erasmus: A Biographical Register of the Renaissance and Reformation, Volumes 1-3. Ed. P.G. Bietenholz and T.B. Deutscher. University of Toronto Press, 2003.

    S.H. Steinberg, Five hundred years of Printing. New edition, revised by John Trevitt. [London]: British Library, 1996. P. 39.

    Universal Short Title Catalogue (University of St Andrews, available online at

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    From the blog

    9th October 2020

    Mantantu Dundulu, N’lemvo. Linguist, pioneer, man of faith.

    To celebrate Black History Month, Dr Daniel Gerrard , Lecturer in Medieval History here at Regent’s, is jumping ahead a few centuries from the...
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