Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Blunt Bible

Every once in a while in Special Collections, we happen upon an item which perfectly illustrates the circuitous and often serendipitous journey a book can make from its printing house origins to a shelf in the James Hardiman Library. The Blunt Bible is one such treasure. Printed anonymously in Cork in the early C19th, this Bible appears almost 70 years later as a well-intentioned gift from an equally anonymous Galway woman to the fractious English poet Wilfrid Scawen Blunt (1840-1922) currently lounging in Galway Gaol. Much to Blunt’s displeasure, the Bible was swiftly confiscated by his jailers on the grounds of its large size, and they parted ways, only to be reunited on an unfettered return to Galway a few years later following a chance sighting of the Bible in the window of local bookseller T.J. Connolly. It remained in Blunt's library until its bequest at his death to his long-time friend Lady Augusta Gregory (1852-1932), and it now forms part of our wonderful Lady Gregory Collection.
If you would like to view the Biblical Printing through the Ages exhibition, please contact the staff of the Special Collections Reading Room in the Hardiman Research Building at specialcollections@nuigalway.ie.
The spotlight exhibition can also be viewed in its entirety on the digital display wall in the Hardiman Foyer during the month of December.

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