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    The sale at Sotheby’s of the manuscripts, first editions, letters and bindings that make up the legendary Honresfield Library – assembled with passion by self-made Victorian industrialists William and Alfred Law at the turn of the 20th century – has been postponed. The Honresfield library contains a treasury of English and Scottish literature including the most important Bronte material to come to light in a generation. 

    Working together with the UK charity Friends of the National Library (FNL), Sotheby’s has agreed to postpone the commencement of the auctions to allow for negotiations for the entirety of the library to be acquired by a consortium of institutions for the nation. The FNL has launched an appeal with an additional donation from its own resources and will be working over the next months to fundraise with the public and private philanthropists. Institutions involved include the Bodleian Libraries, the British Library, The National Library of Scotland, Brontë Parsonage Museum, Robert Burns Birthplace Museum, Brotherton Library (University of Leeds), Abbotsford (The Home Of Sir Walter Scott) and Jane Austen’s House, among others.

    (See post on for May 25, 2021)

    Walter Scott manuscript of The Lay of the Last Minstrel

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