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Memorials of the Family of Skene [manuscript]

Memorials of the Family of Skene [manuscript] by SKENE, William Forbes (1840)

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Author: SKENE, William Forbes
Title: Memorials of the Family of Skene [manuscript]
Year: 1840
Publisher: Unpublished
Place: Aberdeen
Dust Jacket: No
Signed: Yes
Price: £950
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William Forbes Skene's personal research collection, compiled for inclusion or reference purposes during the writing of Memorials of the Family of Skene of Skene which was published by The Spalding Club in 1887.

Folio sized volume bound in twentieth century deep red buckram, rounded spine, no lettering or adornment to binding. On the first pastedown appears the oval book stamp of the New York collector 'Max Safron 300 E.57th St' and his stamp 'M.S.' below. This binding replaces an earlier version as there are Victorian endpapers preceding the eighteen bound documents. These documents use several types of paper with watermarks from the 1830s onwards and are written in a variety of hands, no doubt including Skene's own, but some also notarial or legal. One copy document only, 'Redemptio Alexandri Cullen de Manibus Magistre Jacobi Sene et Ele.t Strath-auchin 12 Nov 1599', is signed by its writer, John Stuart of The Spalding Club and editor of many of its publications, on all 10 pages of his transcript. Many leaves have been annotated by Skene himself as he conducted his researches, sometimes extrapolating family relationships from documents written in continuous prose, occasionally noting that an unlikely fact is correct or drawing his own inference. Laid in is a four page 1887 letter from Peter J Anderson, later librarian of Aberdeen University Library, to Skene in which he acknowledges receipt of 'pp. 84-229 of your MS. which will be put into the printer's hands forthwith' and requesting several factual alterations and clarifications of the author's work.

The manuscripts are as varied in their sources as in their formats and hands but include the 'Register of Sasines... of the Borough of Aberdeen... 1571 to 1767, The Court Book of Skene 'This Book is in the possession of Sir Thos Burnet of Leys, I thought it might contain some information...' and 'Extract from M.S. of Mr J.P. Wood relative to Sir James Skene of Curryhill.' Altogether an important collection.
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