John and William Somner

Gift of books for the new Cathedral Library, c.1665/1666

2 July 2008, revised


David J. Shaw


A reproduction of the entries in Canterbury Cathedral's Donors' Book (CCL Lit. MS E40) for John and William Somner, with transcription and translations of the entries and identifications of books in the Cathedral's collections which are (or might be) those given by the two brothers.

John Somner
Entry from the Donors' Book (CCL Lit. MS E40).
John Somner, brother of William, gives four books to the newly completed Library whose construction he helped to supervise.
This undated entry was made after the death of Abp Juxon (June 1663) and after the completion of the new Library (1664) and possibly after Bishop Warner's gift of the bookshelves (1666). The entry is apparently in the hand of William Somner [the Younger].

CCL Lit. MS E40: John Somner (344K)
  [extract from CCL Lit. MS E40]

Johannes Somner, Guilielmi Somneri olim Reg[ist]rarij filius,
Sylvarum hujus Ecclesiæ Præfectus, atq[ue] operarum in hac Bibliotheca
(sumptibus D[o]m[in]i D[octor]is Juxon nuper Archiepiscopi) à fundamentis instau=
rienda, Inspector assiduus; eodem opere tandem fœliciter absoluto, dedit

John Somner, son of William Somner the former Registrar, Wood Reeve of this Church, and the assiduous supervisor of the work (funded by the late Lord Archbishop Dr Juxon) for the restoration of this Library from its foundations; now that this work has been successfully completed, gave [the following books:]
Mri[?]. Richardi Hooker Politeiam ecclesiasticam. fol.
Richard Hooker. Of the lawes of ecclesiastical politie. London : printed by W. Stansbye and are to be sold by George Lathum, [1632].
Richard Hooker. Of the lawes of ecclesiastical politie. London : Printed by William Stansbye and are to be sold by George Lathum, 1638, 1639.
Dni Lanceloti Andrewes, Episcopi Wintoniensis, Conciones. fol.
Andrewes, Lancelot. XCVI sermons. The third edition. London : Printed by Richard Badger, 1635.

Theologor[um] Anglicor[um in utrumq[ue] Testamentum Annotationes Angl. 2 Vol. fol.
Annotations upon all the books of the Old and New Testament: ... By ... certain learned divines ... Second edition ... enlarged. London : Printed by John Legatt, 1651.

Burtoni Melancholiam. fol.
Robert Burton, The Anatomy of melancholy. The sixt. edition, corrected and augmented. London : Printed & are to be sould by Hen: Crips & Lodo: Lloyd, 1652.
[W/K-4-14; Inscription on title page: 'Library of ye Church of Canty.']


William Somner
Entry from the Donors' Book (CCL Lit. MS E40).
William Somner, the Cathedral's Auditor, records his gift of books to the newly-built Cathedral Library.
One item has been crossed through and another added beneath it.

CCL Lit. MS E40: William Somner (648K)
  [extract from CCL Lit. MS E40]

Guilielmus Somner, hujus Eccl[es]iæ Auditor, et
Reg[ist]rarius, dedit

William Somner, Auditor and Registrar of this Church, gave [the following books:]
Monasticon Anglicanum. prim. pars. fol.
Sir William Dugdale. Monasticon Anglicanum, sive Pandectae Coenobiorum Benedictinorum Cluniacensium Cisterciensium Carthusianorum a primordiis ad eorum usque dissolutionem. Londini : Typis Richardi Hodgkinsonne, 1655; Vol. 2: Typis Aliciae Warren, 1661.
Histor. Bedæ Latino-Saxonic. cum Chronolog. Saxonico-Latin. fol.
Bede. Historiae ecclesiasticae gentis Anglorum libri V. Accesserunt Anglo-Saxonicae leges: et ultimò, leges Henrici I. Cantabrigiae : Ex officina Rogeri Daniel, prostant Londini apud Cornelium Bee, 1644.
[W/E-6-20; Inscription on half title: Pretium 22s. W.S. 1644]

Guil. Lambardi Archaionomiam, cum Legg. Hen .j. fol.
Archaionomia, sive De priscis Anglorum legibus libri, sermone Anglico, ... Gulielmo Lambardo interprete. ... Accessere in hac nostra ultima editione leges Henrici primi. Cantabrigiae : Ex officina Rogeri Daniel. Prostant Londini apud Cornelium Bee, 1644.
[W/H-6-12; Inscription on front free endpaper: Whatever is here in ye margin of mr Somners hand is in his other volume]
[W/E-6-20(2); for the ownership inscription, see the Bede above. The volume is extensively annotated in Somner's hand.]
Dictionarium Saxonico-Latino-Anglicum. fol.
William Somner. Dictionarium Saxonico-Latino-Anglicum ... Opera & studio Guliel. Somneri ... Accesserunt Aelfrici Abbatis Grammatica Latino-Saxonica, cum glossario ... Oxonii : Excudebat Guliel. Hall, pro authore. Prostant Londini, apud Danielem White, 1659.

Mr. Will. Dugdales Description of Warwickshire. fol.
Sir William Dugdale. The antiquities of Warwickshire illustrated; from records, leiger-books. London : Printed by Thomas VVarren, 1656.

A manuscript piece of Chimistry. fol.

Antiquities of Canterbury. 4to.
William Somner. The antiquities of Canterbury. Or a survey of that ancient citie, with the suburbs, and cathedrall. ... With an appendix ... wherein ... the ... records of chiefest consequence, are ... exhibited. London : Printed by I. L[egat] for Richard Thrale, 1640.
[W/S-11-14; corrected and revised in William Somner's hand.]

Treatise of Gavelkind. 4to.
William Somner. A treatise of gavelkind, both name and thing. Shewing the true etymologie and derivation of the one, the nature, antiquity, and original of the other. With sundry emergent observations, both pleasant and profitable to be known of Kentish-men and others, especially such a are studious, either of the ancient custome, or the common law of this kingdome. London : printed by R. and W. Leybourn for the authour, and are to be sold by John Crooke at the Ship, and Daniel White at the Seven Stars in St. Pauls Church-yard, 1660 [i.e. 1659].
Kilbournes Survey of Kent. 4to.
Richard Kilburne. A topographie, or survey of the county of Kent. London : printed by Thomas Mabb for Henry Atkinson, 1659.
[W2/Q-13-15; on verso preceding the frontispiece: Guilielmi Somneri, ex dono Authoris, 1660]

Bilson of Church-Government. 4to.
Thomas Bilson. The perpetuall gouernment of Christs church. London : printed for Thomas Adams, 1610.

Junius Nomenclator. 8vo.
Adrianus Junius. Nomenclator octilinguis omnium rerum propria nomina continens. [Geneva] : Excudebat Iacobus Stoer, 1602.
[W/L-1-53? Inscription on title page: MERICUS Casaubonus]

Merici Casauboni Is. Fil. de 4 Linguis. 8vo.
Méric Casaubon. De quatuor linguis commentationis, pars prior: ... Hebraica: et, ... Saxonica. Londini : typis J. Flesher: sumptibus Ric. Mynne, 1650.
[W2/X-3-12; annotated in William Somner's hand.]

Historiæ Anglicanæ Scriptores antiq. fol.
Sir Roger Twysden (ed.) Historiae Anglicanae scriptores X, Simeon Monachus Dunelmensis. Johannes Prior Hagustaldensis. ... Henricus Knighton ... ex vetustis manuscriptis, nunc primùm ... editi. Londini : Typis Jacobi Flesher, sumptibus Cornelii Bee, 1652.