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Q U I C K   L I N K S

There is more on the Athenian Mercury’s reference in 1691 to a “late Famous Countess” “gone mad with Learning” in the PLAYERS section on Margaret Cavendish.
   In particular, see the webessay concerning the evolving phenomenon and legacy of "Mad Madge" — the sobriquet attaching to Margaret Cavendish, duchess of Newcastle, from the early 1660s, as she became more of a public presence in England, and the notoriety surrounding her published works and London appearances took on a life of its own.

Margaret Cavendish also sought to brand herself as “the Queen of Sciences.” See the Gallery Exhibit, Portraits of Melancholy – III, for more.

For a related discussion of Margaret Cavendish’s Hobbesian understanding of visual & verbal rhetoric as “the art of raising passions for the purpose of persuasion,” see the Editor’s Introduction for Lib. Cat. No. THOB1637.

For a military man’s take on 17th-century personal brands, see the IN BRIEF topic on branding Captain John Smith, Admiral of New England, and his disputed coat of arms (bearing “a chevron betwixt three Turks heads”).

A bibliography of suggested readings pertaining to study of 17th-century heraldry is in the She-philosopher.​com REFERENCES section.

For more about “Mr. Tho. Britton, Smallcoal-Man,” who owned 3 works by Margaret Cavendish (in addition to works by Mary Trye, Anna Maria van Schurman, Bathsua Makin, and Elizabeth Cellier), see his IN BRIEF biography.

Jerry Morris, who is cataloging the library of Charles Lamb on, informs me that “only four of” the 5 Cavendish titles in Lamb’s library at the time of his death “were sold at the sale in America in 1848.”
   For more, see the two LibraryThing pages — an introductory profile and the Lamb Library catalog page — on Charles Lamb’s library, which included 5 books by Margaret Cavendish.

For more on William Jarvis’s enormously popular A Choice Manual of Rare and Select Secrets in Physick and Chyrurgery Collected and Practised by the Right Honorable, the Countesse of Kent, Late Deceased (originally printed in 1653, the book was still selling well in the 18th century, with the 22nd edition appearing in 1726), see the overview page for “The Countesse of Kents Pouder” recipe in She-philosopher.​com’s STUDIES section.

For full bibliographical descriptions of any works cited here, see:

• for pre-20th-century works, She-philosopher.​com’s selected list of Primary Sources

• for 20th-century and 21st-century works, She-philosopher.​com’s selected list of Secondary Sources


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First Published:  April 2004
Revised (substantive):  30 June 2021

Ornamental border from Thomas Johnson's edn. of Gerard's _Herball_ (1633 and 1636)

[ a In Brief topic ]

On a First-Name Basis:
“Margaret,” and Other 17th-Century
Name Brands

IN HER EXCELLENT study of Renaissance women’s love lyric in Europe, 1540–1620, Ann Rosalind Jones explains about the difficulties that past naming practices pose for modern literary critics and historians:

Social and literary-critical convention has it that women whose last names end in “de” plus a place name or noble family name are called by their first names, on the model of the medieval aristocracy: Christine de Pisan is “Christine,” Anne de Beaujeu is “Anne.” In the Renaissance, the status of such names was not as clear; women had considerable choice about calling themselves after their fathers, their husbands, their mothers, or their possessions. The Dames des Roches, as they are formally called on their title pages, actually had the last name Fradonnet, from Madeleine’s first husband and Catherine’s father. But they adopted “des Roches” from the name of a piece of country property they owned, perhaps because it suggested the status of landed nobility. I have followed the convention of using first names for Tullia d’Aragona, Pernette du Guillet, and Catherine des Roches; I hope my readers will not take this usage as patronizing. (I do not, at least, call Gaspara Stampa, the possessor of a forthright bourgeois surname, “Gasparina” — little Gaspara — as her early twentieth-century editor did.) It is cheering, to my mind, as well as convenient that the less problematic last names of the bourgeoisie are in the majority in this study.

(A. R. Jones, The Currency of Eros, 10)

In the case of Margaret Cavendish, to whom social rank and dignities were matters of the utmost importance, there are no such convenient solutions at hand. I have by now run through the gamut of available names — everything from “Margaret” to just plain “Cavendish” — trying to resolve contradictions between what are, in the end, irreconcilable ontologies.

My own preference — for the unadorned surname, “Cavendish” (as distinguished from her husband William, to whom I often refer as “Newcastle”) — would most certainly not have met with Margaret’s approval, who ostentatiously paraded her authorial dignities, in triplicate, on the majority of her title pages, and always signed her epistles to the reader, “M. N.” or “Margaret Newcastle.”

The following is a summary of the appellations which Margaret (the name used on the title page of her 1667 publication) chose to publish under, over the course of a full literary career, spanning from 1653 to 1671.

in 1653:

Written By the Right Honourable, the Lady Margaret Countesse of Newcastle

— Poems and Fancies

Written By the Right Honourable, the Lady Newcastle

— Poems, and Fancies (another impression)

Written by the Right Honourable, the Lady Newcastle

— Philosophicall Fancies

in 1655:

Written By the Right Honorable, the Lady Margaret Newcastle

— The Worlds Olio

Written by the Most Excellent Lady the Lady M. of Newcastle

— The Worlds Olio (another impression)

Written by her Excellency, the Lady Marchionesse of Newcastle

— Philosophical and Physical Opinions

in 1656:

Written by the thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Natures Pictures

in 1662:

Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious and Excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Playes

Written by the thrice Noble, Illustrious and excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Orations

in 1663:

Written by the thrice Noble, Illustrious and excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Orations

Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Philosophical and Physical Opinions (2nd edn.)

in 1664:

written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, The Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— CCXI. Sociable Letters

By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, The Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Philosophical Letters

Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, And Excellent Princess The Lady Marchioness of Newcastle

— Poems, and Phancies (2nd edn.)

in 1666:

Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious and Excellent Princesse, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Observations upon Experimental Philosophy

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princesse, the Duchess of Newcastle

— The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing World

in 1667:

written By the thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, Margaret, Duchess of Newcastle, His Wife

— The Life of ... William Cavendishe

in 1668:

Ab Excellentissima Principe, Margareta Ipsius Uxore Sanctissima Conscripti

— De Vita ... Guilielmi Ducis Novo-castrensis

Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Grounds of Natural Philosophy

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princesse, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Observations upon Experimental Philosophy (2nd edn.)

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princesse, the Duchess of Newcastle

— The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing-World (2nd edn.)

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princesse, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Plays, Never before Printed

Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Poems, or Several Fancies (3rd edn.)

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent Princess, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Orations (2nd edn.)

in 1671:

Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and most Excellent Princess, the Duchess of Newcastle

— Natures Picture (2nd edn.)

Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and most Excellent Princess, the Duchess of Newcastle

— The Worlds Olio (2nd edn.)

The most extensive blazoning of both Cavendishes occurs on the title-page of the English-language biography of her husband, first published in 1667:

The Life of the Thrice Noble, High and Puissant Prince William Cavendishe, Duke, Marquess, and Earl of Newcastle, Earl of Ogle; Viscount Mansfield; and Baron of Bolsover, of Ogle, Bothal and Hepple: Gentleman of His Majesties Bed-chamber; one of His Majesties most Honourable Privy-Councel; Knight of the most Noble Order of the Garter; His Majesties Lieutenant of the County and Town of Nottingham; and Justice in Ayre Trent-North: who had the honour to be Governour to our most Glorious King, and Gracious Sovereign, in his Youth, when He was Prince of Wales; and soon after was made Captain General of all the Provinces beyond the River of Trent, and other Parts of the Kingdom of England, with Power, by a special Commission, to make Knights. Written by the thrice Noble, Illustrious and Excellent Princess, Margaret, Duchess of Newcastle, His Wife. London, Printed by A. Maxwell, in the Year 1667.

Cavendish’s developing authorial identities — from countess, to marchioness, to duchess — closely tracked her husband’s changes in rank. William was first knighted, while still a teenager, in 1610; in 1620, he was raised to the peerage as Viscount Mansfield, by James I; in 1628, he was created Earl of Newcastle, along with Baron Cavendish of Bolsover, Bothal and Heple, by Charles I; in 1629, he inherited the Barony of Ogle; in 1638, he was appointed governor to the Prince of Wales, and made a member of Charles I’s Privy Council; in 1643, he was created Marquess of Newcastle by Charles I (making Margaret a marchioness when she married William two years later in 1645, although this new ranking was not recognized by the interregnum government); and in 1665, he was finally created Duke of Newcastle by Charles II.

In turn, the long sought-after advancements in Margaret’s social rank necessitated the production of second and third editions of her works in the late 1660s. Margaret obsessed over such issues, in print and in private, expressing a punctilious concern with displays of noble dignities in Letter CLXXVI of her Sociable Letters:

Some Ladies th’ other day did Visit me, and in their Discourse they spoke of the Duke of D. the Marquess of C. the Earl of F. and Vicount G. but I observed that in their Discourse they only gave them the Title of a Lord; ’Tis true, a Lord is a Noble Title, but yet the fore-mentioned Titles be of Higher Degrees, by which they ought to be Mentioned or Named; truly, in my Opinion, those Men or Women that do not give every Person their Highest Titles, are either Ill-bred, Foolish, or Spiteful, for it is through Envy, or a Low, Base Nature, to Detract, or Take from any one his Just Rights and Dues, but Noble, Generous, and Heroick Persons, will rather give more than what is Due, than Lessen ones Due Rights, which shews such Persons have more Civility than others have Justice; the truth is, it is a kind of a Cosenage, or Theft, to keep back the best Part of a Title, as to mention several Degrees of Men, and not to give them their due Titles of Honour; but if they should be so Uncivil to Knights and Doctors, as to Dukes, Marquesses, Earls, and Viscounts, there would be many Quarrels in this Nation; for a Knight would take it for an Affront to be call’d Master, and not Sir, and so a Doctor; but the most Ridiculous thing in this Nation is, that when any one asks a Poor Tradesman, as a Cobler, he will say, Pray Sir how doth your Lady? or, Remember my Service to your Lady, meaning the Coblers Wife, which is as much in Extremes this way as th’ other....

(M. Cavendish, CCXI. Sociable Letters, 1664, 368–369)

The inflationary effects of this on society as a whole were noted at the end of the century by the satirist Thomas Brown (bap. 1663, d. 1704):

In Days of Yore, a Man of Honour was more Distinguishable by his Generosity and Affability, than by his Lac’d Liveries; but too many of them having degenerated into the Vices of the Vulgar Fry, Honour is grown Contemptible, the Respect that is due to their Births is lost in a Savage Management, and is now assumed by every Scoundrel.
   The Cobler is Affronted, if you don’t call him Mr. Translator. The Groom Names himself Gentleman of the Horse, and the Fellow that carries Guts to the Bears, writes himself one of His Majesty’s Officers. The Page calls himself a Child of Honour, and the Foot-Boy stiles himself my Ladies Page. Every Little Nasty Whore takes upon her the Title of Lady, and every Impudent Broken-mouth’d Manteau-maker, must be call’d Madam Theodosia Br——. Every Dunce of a Quack, is call’d a Physician. Every Gown-Man a Counseller. Every Silly Huff, a Captain. Every Gay thing, a Chevalier. Every Parish Reader, a Doctor: And every Writing Clerk in the Office, Mr. Secretary: Which is all but Hypocrisie and Knavery in Disguise; for nothing is now called by its right Name.
   The Heralds I see have but little to do, Honour and Arms which used to employ all Men of Birth and Parts, now almost dwindled into an Airy Nothing ....

(T. Brown, Amusements Serious and Comical, Calculated for the Meridian of London, 1st edn., 1700, 129–30)

One of Margaret’s plays is themed around the usurpation of inherited nobility — “with True Honour, and Princely Dignity, which Titles were created from an Absolute and Divine Power” — by the purchase or taking of “mock Honours, and feigned Dignities.” It was simply not acceptable to Margaret Newcastle that an “Ale Wife” is made a Countess by marrying an Earl. As her play indicates, the traditional system of “Titles, Rights and Marriage” not only established personal “Greatness,” but undergirded the aristocratic state. Lady True Honour expresses the playwright’s own sentiments when she lectures Madam Inquirer on the basics of heraldry and the value of social rank:

Thus true Honour is derived from Heaven, and ought to be respected, and bowed too, as being divine: but in this age Honour is used, or abused, as other divine things are: this is the reason I will not visit the Apocriphal Ladies [the Comical Dutchess and the Imaginary Queen]: for my Honour is derived from the sacred Spring of Honour, and is not a self-given Honour and Dignity, which ought to be punished as a Presumption and Usurpation: but I have so much Honour, as not to abase the Honour and Dignity that my Husband, and his Fore-fathers were adopted to: And I by Marriage, being one with my Husband; for man and wife are but one, and my Husbands Honour being Inhereditary, succeeds to his Children; wherefore his Wife will never give place to Mountebanks.... But if Royalty will suffer such Heresies, and Hereticks in the Court of Honour, they are not to be lamented, if their Courts fall to utter ruine; for it is with Titles and Dignities, as with Laws; if there were no Laws, there would be no Government, and if there were no Degrees and dignities, there would be no Royalty; so likewise if the Laws be corrupt and abused, Government will fall to ruin, and if Honour be abused and usurpt, Royaltie will fall from its Throne; but howsoever, I keep up the Right of my place, because it is the cause and interest of all the Nobility of my Country, so that if I should give place, I should be a Traytor to true Honour, and dignified Persons.

(M. Cavendish, A Comedy of the Apocriphal Ladies, in Playes Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious and Excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle, 1662, 648)

Unfortunately for Margaret, the first edition of her Poems and Fancies, published during the interregnum, was also “a Traytor to true Honour” by impressing the lowlier title of countess on public memory. Indeed, Margaret would not have been happy to learn that when Sarah Jinner placed her on a short list of “rare” women poets in 1658, Jinner still referred to her as “the Countess of Newcastle” — the only title recognized by the republican regime. William London also referred to “Poems and fancies by the Lady Marg. Newcastle. folio.” in his bookseller’s Catalogue of the Most Vendible Books in England, published the year before in 1657. Once taken hold, the earlier countess identity stuck, as in the Athenian Mercury’s reference in 1691 to a “late Famous Countess” “gone mad with Learning.”

facsimile of mid-17th-century title-page     facsimile of late-17th-century title-page

^  ABOVE LEFT: Letterpress title-page for 1st edition of Cavendish’s Poems and Fancies printed in 1653, with hand correction of “Countesse” ranking (someone has changed it to read “Marchiones”).
^  ABOVE RIGHT: Letterpress title-page for Cavendish’s 2nd edition of Poems and Fancies printed, after the Restoration, in 1664, showcasing Cavendish’s restored title of “Marchioness.”

The new editions of her works published in 1666–1671 helped correct the record.

facsimile of mid-17th-century title-page     facsimile of late-17th-century title-page

^  ABOVE LEFT: Letterpress title-page for the 1st edn. of Cavendish’s Natures Pictures Drawn by Fancies Pencil to the Life printed during the interregnum in 1656. Margaret, identifying herself as “the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle,” here asserted her rightful dignity in defiance of republican rule.
   This 1st edn. of Natures Pictures mingled “feigned Stories” with “a true Story at the latter end, wherein there is no Feignings” — Margaret’s autobiography, which she titled “A True Relation of My Birth, Breeding, and Life.”
^  ABOVE RIGHT: Letterpress title-page for the 2nd edn. of Cavendish’s newly-titled Natures Picture Drawn by Fancies Pencil to the Life printed in 1671, with author identified as “the Duchess of Newcastle.” The revised work, printed by a woman (Anne Maxwell), featured only the “Feigned Stories” of the original, and was reissued without the autobiography.

Thus, when John Bullord printed his catalogue of A Curious Collection of Books ... to “be sold by auction, on Tuesday June 11th, 1695. and the following days” — including three folios by Margaret Cavendish, all of which were published before Cavendish became a duchess in 1665 — he chose to describe Item No. 111 as the “Dutches of Newcastles Natures picture drawn by Fancys pensil-----1656.” Similarly, Bullord described the “Dutch. of Newcastles Orations of divers sorts-----1652” and the “Dutchess of Newcastles Philosophical and Physical Opinions-----1663” as the duchess’s work, even though their title-pages stated that the author was a marchioness. So Bullord, at least, always referred to Cavendish in his catalogues by her highest rank, regardless of what was printed on the title-page of the book being auctioned.

This may have been a marketing ploy, or Bullord may have fallen into this habit with his earlier auction catalogs of 1691 (A Catalogue of Books of Two Eminent Mathematicians ..., for auction beginning 21 May 1691, including a copy of “A new Method of Horsemanship, by the Duke of Newcastle.-----1667”) and 1694 (The Library of Mr. Tho. Britton, Smallcoal-Man ..., for auction beginning 1 Nov. 1694, including copies of three works by Margaret Cavendish: “Dutchess of Newcastles The grounds of natural Philosophy-----1668”; “Dutchess of Newcastles Observations upon experimental Philosophy-----1668”; and “Dutchess of Newcastles The Worlds Olio-----1671”). In both cases, the work by William (to be auctioned off in 1691), and the works by Margaret (to be auctioned off in 1694), were all revised editions printed after William became a duke, and each advertised the author’s new ducal rank on the title-page.

H. T. E. Perry was first to comment on the significant title change from the plural Natures Pictures in 1656, to the singular Natures Picture in 1671, as in keeping with the suppression of Margaret’s autobiography:

The first edition of 1656 (some copies dated 1655) also contained A True Relation of my Birth, Breeding and Life, while its title had the plural form, Nature’s Pictures, etc. In 1671 it is preceded by an enriched portrait of the authoress and by some laudatory lines from her husband.

(H. T. E. Perry, The First Duchess of Newcastle and Her Husband as Figures in Literary History, 203)

While some have interpreted the suppressed autobiography as another example of patriarchy’s silencing of women, I don’t, and agree instead with Douglas Grant that Cavendish dropped A True Relation because she felt that it “lessened her dignity” (Grant, 154). Moreover, the duchess’s reevaluation of A True Relation of My Birth, Breeding, and Life was prudent. While many of us today continue to be fascinated by the suppressed autobiography, it contributed to a fixation with the couple’s eccentricities — a lasting picture of what Horace Walpole called “foolish nobility” (“What a picture of foolish nobility was this stately poetic couple, retired to their own little domain, and intoxicating one another with circumstantial flattery on what was of consequence to no mortal but themselves!”). Walpole’s early 19th-century editor, Thomas Park, who shared Walpole’s critical opinion of Cavendish, mocked the “very curious account of her birth, education, and life, written by her grace: where she has said very high things of the exquisite beauty of her person, and rare endowments of her mind,” thus confirming Margaret’s worst fears about how her own prose might undermine her Duchess of Newcastle brand. (Walpole, A Catalogue of the Royal and Noble Authors of England, Scotland, and Ireland, ed. by Thomas Park, 1806, iii. 136n3)

More congenial by far would have been the rebranding efforts of the 19th-century Romantic essayist, Charles Lamb (1775–1834), who borrowed from Margaret’s lexicon (e.g., reusing her epithet “romancical”) and referred affectionately to Margaret by her own chosen identity: “a dear favourite of mine, of the last century but one — the thrice noble, chaste and virtuous — but again somewhat fantastical and original-brained, generous Margaret Newcastle.” Lamb would name Cavendish twice more in print, in similar vein: once as “that princely woman, the thrice noble Margaret Newcastle”; and once as “dear Margaret Newcastle.” Lamb was intimately familiar with Margaret’s biography of her husband, which he described as a “jewel,” and with her Sociable Letters, which Lamb described as full of “Pure thoughts, kind thoughts, high thoughts,” and was chagrined when “spiteful K” (the playwright, James Kenney, 1780–1849) borrowed Lamb’s personal copy of Margaret’s Sociable Letters, taking it with him to France, where Kenney lived for several years. In “The Two Races of Men” (Essays of Elia, 1st edn., 1823), Lamb

... speaks of her letters. He has been alluding to Coleridge, alias Comberbatch, who is the type of the one race, the men who borrow, “matchless in his depredations” at that. “To lose a volume to C.,” says Lamb, “carries some sense and meaning in it. You are sure that he will make one hearty meal on your viands, if he can give no account of the platter after it. But what moved thee, wayward, spiteful K. to be so importunate to carry off with thee, spite of tears and adjurations to thee to forbear, the letters of that princely woman, the thrice noble Margaret Newcastle? — knowing at the time, and knowing that I knew also, thou most assuredly would'st never turn over one leaf of the illustrious folio — what but the mere spirit of contradiction, and childish love of getting the better of thy friend? — Then worst cut of all! to transport it with thee to the Gallican land:
          ‘Unworthy land to harbour such a sweetness,
          A virtue in which all ennobling thoughts dwelt,
          Pure thoughts, kind thoughts, high thoughts, her sex's wonder!’
“—hadst thou not thy play-books, and books of jests and fancies, about thee, to keep thee merry, even as thou keepest all companies with thy quips and mirthful tales? — Child of the Green-room, it was unkindly done of thee.”
     And in the essay on Mackery End, writing of Bridget Elia, and speaking of her native disrelish for anything odd or out of the common, Lamb says: “I can pardon her blindness to the beautiful obliquities of the Religio Medici; but she must apologise to me for certain disrespectful insinuations, which she has been pleased to throw out latterly touching the intellectuals of a dear favourite of mine, of the last century but one, — the thrice noble, chaste and virtuous, — but again somewhat fantastical and original-brained, generous Margaret Newcastle.”
     Again in the Last Essays of Elia [1st edn., 1833] his “Detached Thoughts on Books and Reading” bring him back to the Life. Certain kinds of books, he says, the perpetually self-reproductive volumes — “we see them individually perish with less regret, because we know the copies of them to be eterne. But where a book is at once both good and rare — where the individual is almost the species, and when that perishes:
          We know not where is that Promethean torch
          That can its light relumine —
“Such a book, for instance, as the Life of the Duke of Newcastle, by his Duchess — no casket is rich enough, no casing sufficiently durable, to honour and keep safe such a jewel.”

(qtd. in Ernest Rhys, Introduction, The Life of the Duke of Newcastle, 1915, vii–viii)

Both her Life (1667) and her Sociable Letters (1664) proclaimed Margaret’s “thrice noble” status on their title-pages. To some modern readers, Margaret’s repeated self-blazoning as “thrice noble” is even more of an attention-grabber than her well-advertised ducal rank. But in the 17th century, such exaggerated phrasing was not uncommon. For example, William Jarvis dedicated his 1653 compilation of Elizabeth Talbot Grey’s medical recipes, A Choice Manual of Rare and Select Secrets in Physick and Chyrurgery, to

... the Vertuous and most Noble Lady, Letitia Popham, Wife of the Honorable and truely Valiant Colonell, Alexander Popham ...

elsewhere addressing Lady Popham, aligned with the county’s republican magistracy, as “Thrice Noble and truely Vertuous Lady.”

And Jarvis bound Elizabeth, countess of Kent’s recipes with another book of chemical recipes, A True Gentlewomans Delight, which he dedicated to

... the Vertuous and Most Hopefull Gentlewomen, Mis. Anne Pile, Eldest Daughter of the Honorable Sr. Francis Pile Baronet, deceased ...

as payback for “singular favours ... received, not onely from your worthy self, but also from your thrice noble progenitors.”

Ornamental border from Thomas Johnson's edn. of Gerard's _Herball_ (1633 and 1636)


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The “Dutch. of Newcastles Orations of divers sorts-----1652” — This is a typographical error (the date of publication should read 1662). Margaret Cavendish’s Orations of Divers Sorts, Accommodated to Divers Places was printed in 1662, 1663, and 1668. ::

The Library of Mr. Tho. Britton, Smallcoal-Man ... — The “curious collection of books in divinity, history, physick and chimistry” sent for auction to John Bullord in 1694 by the wealthy charcoal merchant, concert promoter, and book collector, Thomas Britton (1644–1714), included several works by women: 3 titles reissued by Margaret Cavendish (“Dutchess of Newcastles The grounds of natural Philosophy-----1668” and “Dutchess of Newcastles Observations upon experimental Philosophy-----1668” and “Dutchess of Newcastles The Worlds Olio-----1671”); Mary Trye’s “Medicatix [sic], or the Woman Physician-----1675”; Anna Maria van Schurman’s “Treatise of the learned Maid Anna Maria a Schurman-----1659”; Bathsua Makin’s “An Essay to revive the Education of Gentlewomen-----1673”; and by the infamous “Popish Midwife,” Elizabeth Cellier, “Malice defeated, or relation of the Accusation and Deliverance of Eliz. Cellier, 1680. Notes upon the late Romance published by Eliz. Cellier Midwife 1680.”
  “Britton may have made the transition from tradesman to savant after making the acquaintance of a Clerkenwell neighbour, Theophilus Garencières, who found in him an apt, enthusiastic, and original pupil in the science of chemistry. He constructed ‘a moving Elaboratory’ which so impressed a friend of Garencières that he paid Britton a handsome fee to construct one for him on his Welsh estate. They also shared an interest in esoteric knowledge as Garencières was the translator of Nostradamus and Britton was an admirer of Rosacrucian ideas. However, it is likely that Britton was valued more widely for his knowledge of books in general and of the book trade. Thus the bibliophiles Robert Harley, earl of Oxford, the duke of Devonshire, and the earls of Pembroke, Winchilsea, and Sunderland encouraged his conversation on their book hunting expeditions in the City on winter Saturday afternoons. Similarly, Britton is said to have sold a collection to Lord Somers—which formed the basis for the Somers Tracts published in 1748–52—for a very large sum.” (ODNB entry for Britton by Douglas A. Reid, n. pag.) ::

Lady Popham, aligned with the county’s republican magistracy — Letitia, Lady Popham (née Kerr) was the second wife of the politician and parliamentarian army officer, Alexander Popham, whom she married c.1644.
  In 1653, when William Jarvis sought Lady Popham’s patronage for his compilation of the countess of Kent’s A Choice Manual of Rare and Select Secrets in Physick and Chyrurgery — thus ensuring that his book would “find universall acceptance amongst persons of greatest Eminency” — her “endeared truely Honorable Husband” (who had also bestowed “many singular favours” upon Jarvis) still supported Cromwell, but was moving away from his earlier radical views.
  Popham “had been an opponent of the rule of the major-generals and after Cromwell’s death in September 1658 Popham increasingly distanced himself from the regime. Indeed he was strongly suspected of making contact with royalist agents during Booth’s rising of August 1659, his house at Hunstrete later being searched for arms. By this date he, like many moderate parliamentarians, was ready to accept the restoration of the monarchy.” In 1663, after the Restoration, Popham entertained Charles II “most lavishly at Littlecote and, as JP and deputy lieutenant of Wiltshire, helped avert a puritan rising in the county.” (John Wroughton, ODNB entry for Alexander Popham, n. pag.) ::