The Englishman's Library

From Encyclopedia of English Literature

File:Englishmans Library frontispiece.jpg
Frontispiece found in vol. 10 of the Library

Template:Italic title The Englishman's Library was an English book series of the 1840s, a venture of the publisher James Burns. It ran eventually to 31 volumes.

The title had been used already in 1824, for The Englishman's library, edited by E. H. L., published by Charles Knight.[1] The series was announced in ambitious fashion in the British Critic.[2] It was started by William Gresley and Edward Churton, with propagandistic aims; the works are still a source for the "condition of England" debate of the time. Gresley wrote six novels for the series.[3]


According to its prospectus, the Library aimed to "unite a popular style with sound Christian principles". The announced authors did not in fact all contribute.[4]

Those behind the series were younger High Church men who wished to imitate some of the success of the Tracts for the Times. They were less hostile to the Tractarians than older, more orthodox members of the Hackney Phalanx.[5]

List of volumes

Number Date Author Title Comment
1 1840 William Gresley Clement Walton, or the English Citizen novel[6]
2 Henry Howard Scripture History in Familiar Lectures (Old Testament)[6]
3 1839 Simon Patrick, edited by Thomas Chamberlain The Parable of the Pilgrim[6] First published 1664.[7] Chamberlain was of Christ Church, Oxford and St Thomas the Martyr's Church, Oxford.
4 Thomas Chamberlain A Help to Knowledge[6]
5 1840 William Palmer A Compendious Ecclesiastical History from the Earliest Period to the Present Time[8] Church history[6]
6 Thomas Ken The Practice of Divine Love
7 Robert Anderson The Lord's Prayer, a manual of religious knowledge Anderson was perpetual curate of Trinity Chapel, Brighton
8 1840 Edward Churton The Early English Church
9 Francis Edward Paget Tales of the Village vol. I[9]
10 William Sewell Christian Morals Based on Sewell's lectures as White's Professor of Moral Philosophy.[10]
11 William Sherlock, Henry Melvill (editor) Public Worship: a Practical Discourse of Religious Assemblies Published in 1681 against dissenters; and again in 1700.[11][12]
12 Robert Isaac Wilberforce The Five Empires: a Compendium of Ancient History
13 1840 William Gresley The Siege of Lichfield, a Tale illustrative of the Great Rebellion Novel[13]
14 1840 Henry Howard Scripture History. The New Testament[14]
15 1841 William Gresley Charles Lever, or the Man of the Nineteenth Century Novel[13]
16 Francis Edward Paget Tales of the Village vol. II[9]
17 Dorothy Pakington, William Pridden (editor)[15] The Art of Contentment Devotional work. It was first published attributed to the author of The Whole Duty of Man;[16] in the 1840s this author was still widely identified with Pakington. The 1864 suggestion of Francis Barham that the author was Richard Allestree is now the scholarly consensus.[17] Pridden became vicar of West Stow.
18 Francis Edward Paget Tales of the Village vol. III[9]
19 1841 William Gresley The Forest of Arden, a Tale Illustrative of the English Reformation Novel[13]
20 Robert Isaac Wilberforce Rutilius Novel
21 1842 Francis Charles Massingberd English History of the leaders of the Reformation
22 William Henry Teale Lives of Eminent English Laymen Containing Lord Falkland, Izaak Walton, and Robert Nelson.
23 Thomas Chamberlain (editor) Selected Letters
24 1843 William Gresley Church-Clavering, or The Schoolmaster Novel, in which he developed ideas on education[13]
25 1843 Henry Formby A Visit to the East; comprising Germany and the Danube, Constantinople, Asia Minor, Egypt, and Idumea
26 1843[18] William Pridden Australia; Its History and Present Condition
27 1844 Samuel Wilberforce A History of the Protestant Episcopal Church in America[19]
28 1845 Samuel Fox Monks and Monasteries: being an account of English monachism
29 1845 Edward Wilson The Martyr of Carthage[20] Novel
30 1845 William Gouan Todd A History of the Ancient Church in Ireland Todd was then curate of Kilkredy.
31 1846 William Gresley Coniston Hall, or the Jacobites Novel[13]

The Juvenile Englishman's Library

Paget as editor started a children's book collection, The Juvenile Englishman's Library, in 1844. It was inspired in part by the success of Edgar Taylor's English translations of Grimm's Fairy Tales. The series ran to 21 titles. Later John Fuller Russell was editor.[21][22] Volume 4, Popular Tales (1844), had translation of fairy tales by Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué, Wilhelm Hauff and Karl Spindler.[23] Four volumes were by John Mason Neale.[24][25]



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