Wood’s Biographical Dictionary of Oxford AlumniSKU: 5433
Wood’s Biographical Dictionary of Oxford Alumni
Date of publication:
This work, the first of its kind to deal with the University and the Colleges, courted controversy
Wood, Anthony: Athenae Oxonienses. An exact History of all the Writers and Bishops who have had their Education in the most Antient and Famous University of Oxford, from the Fifteenth Year of King Henry the Seventh, A.D. 1500, to the Author’s Death in November 1695 [...] The Second Edition, very much Corrected and Enlarged; with the Addition of above 500 new Lives from the Author’s Original Manuscript. Printed for Robert Knaplock, Daniel Midwinter, and Jacob Tonson 1720. 2 vols, folio. pp. [xiv] cols. 742 p. [i] cols. 286 pp. [i] [viii]; pp. [vi] cols. 1186 p. [i] cols. 238 pp. [i] [viii]. Titles printed in red and black, old ownership signature partially obliterated on first. Trivial marginal waterstaining at intervals. Worn contemporary calf, rebacked and recornered.
Wood himself, who sometimes chose to style himself “à Wood”, is described as “a very strong lusty man, of uncouth manners and appearance ... not avaricious and a despiser of honours ... [he] led a life of self-denial, entirely devoted to antiquarian research. Bell-ringing and music were his chief relaxations.” (Ency. Brit. 11th edition.) Britannica also adds that “his taste and judgment are frequently warped by prejudice”. His work, the first of its kind to deal with the University and the Colleges, courted controversy. This second, revised English edition contains posthumous defences by Wood’s nephew, after Wood had been condemned at the vice-chancellor’s court for libels against the earl of Clarendon in the first edition of 1693, and attacked by Bishop Burnet for displays of popish prejudice. ESTC T59423