Lot 8
  • 8


1,200 - 1,500 GBP
2,750 GBP
bidding is closed


  • A collection of 46 manuscript verse separates
  • ink on paper
including copies of poems by Jonathan Swift (answer poem, "The nymph who wrote this in a humourous fit", together with original "Rebus"), R. B. Sheridan ("Verses to the memory of Garrick"), Voltaire (verse epistle to Frederick the Great, 1747), William Congreve (epistle to Lord Cobham "Sincerest critic of my Prose or Rhime"), James Thompson ("Come gentle god of soft desire"), Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Colley Cibber, and Earl Nugent ("Ode to William Pultney"), theatrical prologues and epilogues, two poems addressed to William Whitehead on his being made Poet Laureate, one poem addressed to Lord Cornbury, and various political satires (on Robert Walpole and other subjects), two poems with integral address leaves to Lady Charlotte Hyde, various sizes, 1730s-80s (mostly 1730s-40s)


This is one of 22 lots that have been removed from Holywell House, Hampshire, the home of the Villiers family, Earls of Clarendon. They chiefly relate to the life and careers of two contemporaries: Henry Hyde, Viscount Cornbury (1710-53), and Thomas Villiers (1709-86), created successively Baron Hyde of Hindon (1756) and Earl of Clarendon (1776).

Cornbury was the last heir to the Earldom of Clarendon that had been created for the statesman and historian Edward Hyde (1609-1674). Cornbury had Jacobite sympathies but was MP for the University of Oxford – with which his family had powerful connections – from 1732 until 1751. He became disillusioned with politics in the later 1740s and spent his final years in France. Cornbury counted Pope and Swift amongst his friends, and was himself the author of pamphlets and at least two plays (see lots 6 and 7). He died, unmarried, in Paris in 1753. Most of Cornbury’s property was inherited by his niece, Charlotte (née Capel). Thomas Villiers, second son of the Earl of Jersey, was her husband. Villiers had spent the 1730s and ‘40s as a diplomat mostly in the German-speaking world (none of his diplomatic papers are included in this offering) and, following his retirement from the diplomatic service, he entered government in the 1760s. As Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1771-82 and 1783-86), Clarendon was in Cabinet during the American War of Independence (see lots 14-19).