Our French collection is superlative, both on the open shelves, and held in the Briggs Room and elsewhere. This is in part due to donations from: Suzette Taylor (LMH 1884-86), a great traveller, who also left money for the Suzette Taylor travelling scholarship,and whose collection of about 800 books in French, Spanish and Catalan reflects her book-buying during the course of these travels; and Kathleen Chesney (LMH 1918-22; later a fellow at St. Hilda’s).
Subsequent donors include: Vivienne Mylne(LMH 1945-48); Joan Crow (LMH 1938-41 & F.1947-84); and most recently Betty Tupling(LMH 1936-39), who has donated a beautiful small set of Fenelon’s Telemaque published in 1796.
Particularly significant is our copy of the first edition of the famous Diderot Encyclopedie, a magnificent set comprising 17 volumes of text and 11 volumes of plates, published in Paris between 1751 and 1772, and given by Helena Deneke (LMH Fellow1913– 38). We have wonderful multi -volume sets of many 17th and 18th century authors, as well as seven rare 16th century French publications.