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Leland Manuscripts


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Leland's manuscripts consisting of:
  1. 'Johannis Lelandi Londinensis, Antiquarij doctissimi et gravissimi Collectanea. Ex varijs authoribus, chronologis, manuscriptis, archivis, cartis antiquis, monumentis publicis et privatis excerpta, et in quatuor volumina digesta...' vols. 1-4
  2. The Itinerary of England and Wales, by John Leland, vols. 1-8


  • [c. 1540-1555]


12 shelfmarks

Language of Materials

English and Latin

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MSS. Top. gen. c. 1].
Please see our help page for further guidance on citing archives and manuscripts.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. Top. gen. c. 1-4, e. 8-15

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 13094

Biographical / Historical

John Leland (c. 1506-1552), the topographer, graduated from Christ's College, Cambridge, and in 1530 was appointed keeper of the King's library. Under a royal commission he travelled widely through England and Wales in 1535-1543, just before the Reformation. His notes are therefore of especial value, and preserve many memoranda of buildings and libraries which soon after perished. Further details are given in the Dictionary of National Biography.

Other Finding Aids

Falconer Madan, et al., A summary catalogue of western manuscripts in the Bodleian Library at Oxford which have not hitherto been catalogued in the Quarto series (7 vols. in 8 [vol. II in 2 parts], Oxford, 1895-1953; reprinted, with corrections in vols. I and VII, Munich, 1980), vol. II, nos. 3117-23.

Custodial History

MSS. Top. gen. c. 1-4 passed at Leland's death to Sir John Cheke, from him to Humphrey Purefoy, whose son Thomas gave them to William Burton in 1612.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The manuscripts were presented to the Library by William Burton in 1632 and 1642-3.
Leland Manuscripts
Emily Tarrant
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom