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ught Mr. Oidys’s library. It had been in the hands of Dr. Berkenhout, who had a design of publishing an English Topographer, and riiay possibly have inserted the articles

Of the writings of Mr. Oldys, some of which were anonymous, the following account is probably very imperfect: I. In the British Museum is Oidys’s copy of “Langbaine’s _ Lives,” &c. not interleaved, but filled with notes written in the margin, and between the lines, in an extremely small hand. It came to the Museum as a part of the library of Dr. Birch, who bought it at an auction of Oidys’s books and papers for one guinea. Transcripts of this have been made by various literary gentlemen. 2. Mr. Gough, in the first volume of his “British Topography,” p. 567, tells us, that he had “been favoured, by George Steevens, esq. with the use of a thick folio of titles of books and pamphlets relative to London, and occasionally to Westminster and Middlesex, from 1521 to 1758, collected by the late Mr. Oldys, with many others added, as it seems, in another hand. Among them,” he adds, “are many purely historical, and many of too low a kind to rank under the head of topography or histpry. The rest, which are very numerous, I have inserted, marked O, with corrections, &c. of those I had myself collected. Mr. Steevens purchased this ms. of T. Davies, who bought Mr. Oidys’s library. It had been in the hands of Dr. Berkenhout, who had a design of publishing an English Topographer, and riiay possibly have inserted the articles in a different hand. It afterwards became the property of sir John Hawkins.” 3. “The British Librarian, exhibiting a compendious Review of all unpublished and valuable books, in all sciences,” which was printed without his name, in 1737, 8vo, and after having been long neglected and sold at a low price, is now valued as a work of such accuracy and utility deserves. 4, A “Life of sir Waiter Raleigh,” prefixed to his “History of the World,” in folio. 5. “Introduction to Hay ward’s British Muse (1738);” of which he says, “that the penurious publishers, to contract it within a sheet, left out a third part of the best matter in it, and made more faults than were in the original.” In this he was assisted by Dr. Campbell. 6. “His Observations on the Cure of William Taylor, the blind boy at Ightharn, in Kent, by John Taylor, jun. oculist, 1753,” 8vo. Thetide of the pamphlet here alluded to was, “Observations on the Cure of William Taylor, the blind Boy, of Ightham, in Kent, who, being born with cataracts in both eyes, was at eight years of age brought to sight on the 8th of October, 1751, by Mr. John Taylor, jun. oculist, in Hattongarden; containing his strange notions of objects upon the first enjoyment of his new sense; also, some attestations thereof; in a letter written by his father, Mr. William Taylor, farmer, in the same parish: interspersed with several curious examples, and remarks, historical and philosophical, thereupon. Dedicated to Dr. Monsey, physician to theRoyal hospital at Chelsea. Also, some address to the public, for a contribution towards the foundation of an hospital for the blind, already begun by some noble personages,” 8vo. 7. Various lives in the “Biographia Britannica,” with the signature G, the initial letter of Gray’sInn, where he formerly lived. He mentions, in his notes on Langbaine, his life of sir George Etherege, of Caxton, of Thomas May, and of Edward Alleyn, inserted in that work. He composed the “Life of Atherton;” which, if it ever deserved to have had a place in that work, ought not to have been removed from it any more than the “Life of Eugene Aram,” which is inserted in the second edition. That the publishers of the second edition meant no indignity to Oldys, by their leaving out his “Life of Atherton,” appears fram their having transcribed into their work a much superior quantity of his writings, consisting of notes and extracts from printed books, styled “Oldys’s Mss.” Of these papers no other account is given than that “they are a large and useful body of biographical materials;” but we may infer, from the known industry and narrow circumstances of the writer, that, if they had been in any degree prepared for public consideration, they would not have so long lain dormant. 8. At the importunity of Curll, he gave him a sketch of the life of Nell Gvvin, to help out his V History of the Stage.“9. He was concerned with Des Maizeaux in writing the” Life of Mr. Richard Carew,“the antiquary of Cornwall, in 1722. 10.” Observations, Historical and Critical, on the Catalogue of English Lives.“Whether this was ever printed we know not. 11.” Tables of the eminent persons celebrated by English Poets.“This he seems to quote in a manuscript note on Langbaine, but it does not appear to have been printed. 12. He mentions, ibidem, the first volume of his” Poetical Characteristics,“on which we may make the same remark. If these two works continued in ms. during his life-time, it is probable that they were not finished for publication, or that no bookseller would buy them. 13. O,idys seems to have been concerned likewise as a writer in the” General Dictionary,“for he mentions his having been the author of” The Life of sir-John Talbot,“in that work and in Birch’s Mss. is a receipt from him for \.L 5s. for writing the article of Fas tolf 14. He mentions likewise, in his notes on Langbaine, that he was the author of a pamphlet against Toland, called” No blind Guides.“15. He says, ibidem, that he communicated many things to Mrs. Cooper, which she published in her” Muse’s Library.“16. In 1746 was published, in 12mo,” health’s Improvement; or, Rules comprising the nature, method, and manner, of preparing foods used in this nation. Written by that ever famous Thomas Moffett, doctor in physic; corrected and enlarged by Christopher Bennet, doctor in physic, and fellow of the College of Physicians in London. To which is now prefixed, a short View of the Author’s Life and Writings, by Mr. Oldys; and an Introduction by R. James, M. D.“17. In the first volume of British Topography,” page 31, mention is made of a translation of “Gamden’s Britannia,” in 2 vols. 4to, “by W. O. esq.” which Mr. Gough, with great probability, ascribes to Mr. Oldys. 18. Among the Mss. in the British Museum, described in Mr. Ayscough’s Catalogue, we find p. 24, “Some Considerations upon the publication of sir Thomas Roe’s Epistolary Collections, supposed to be written by Mr. Oldys, and by him tendered to Sam. Boroughs, esq. with proposals, and some notes of Dr. Birch.” 19. In p. 736, “Memoirs of the family of Oldys.” 20. In p. 741, “Two small pocket books of short Biographical Anecdotes of many Persons,” and “some Fragments of Poetry,” perhaps collected by Mr. Oldys? 21. In p. 750, and p. 780, are two ms letters “of Mr. Oldys,” 1735 and 1751. 22. It is said, in a ms paper, by Dr. Dticarel, who knew him well, that Oldys had by him, at the time of his death, some collections towards a “Life of Shakspeare,” but not digested into any order, as he told the doctor a few days before he died. 23. On the same authority he is said to be a writer in, or the writer of, “The Scarborough Miscellany,1732, and 1734. 24. “The Universal Spectator,” of which he was some time the publisher, was a newspaper, a weekly journal, said; on the top of the paper, which appeared originally in single sheets, to be “by Henry Stonecastle, in Northumberland,” 1730 1732. It was afterwards collected into two volumes 8vo to which a third and fourth were added in 1747. In one of his Mss. we find the following wellturned anagram

an English topographer, was the son of Thomas Risdon, bencher of

, an English topographer, was the son of Thomas Risdon, bencher of the Inner Temple, afterwards treasurer of that society, and lastly, recorder of Totness, who published some law “Readings,” and died in 1641. His son was educated at Great Torrington, Devonshire, previous to his studying at Exeter college, Oxford, which he left without a degree, in consequence, as Prince supposes, of his coming to some family property which required his presence, and rendered him independent. On this, which was an estate at Winscot, be appears to have lived in retirement, and died in 1640. He drew up an account of Devonshire, which remained in ms. of which there were several copies, until 1714, when it was printed, under the title of “The Chorographical Description or Survey of the County of Devon, &c.” William Chappie, of Exeter, intended a new edition of this work, and actually issued proposals; but dying in 1781, his design was not completed, although in 1785 a portion of it, printed at Exeter, appeared in 4to, with many notes and additions. There is a “continuation” of Risdon’s Survey, which is paged on from the first part, and very rarely to be met with, but there are copies in the Bodleian and in the library of St. John’s, given by Dr. Rawlinson.