Peterhouse’s Ward Library takes its name from Sir Adolphus William Ward (b. 1837), who was Master from 1900 until his death in 1924.  Ward bequeathed some 5,000 volumes to the Library; however, this did not constitute the entirety of his personal library. The Ward Library has recently been able to procure further volumes from Ward’s […]

This month, on October 31st 2017, it is five hundred years since the event that is often said to have sparked the beginning of the Protestant movement in Europe: when Martin Luther nailed his ‘95 Theses’ against the doctrine of indulgences on the Castle Church door in Wittenberg. Therefore, it seems somehow appropriate that I […]

Recently acquired by the Ward Library is the undergraduate diary for the calendar year 1858 of Herbert Mills Birdwood (1837–1907) who rose to be Puisne Judge of the High Court, Bombay (1885–92).  The family had strong Indian connections and indeed Herbert Mills was born there.  He was elected to an Honorary Fellowship of the College […]

Isaac Barrow (1630–77) was admitted as a foundation scholar of Peterhouse in 1643, in the middle of the English Civil War. He did not stay long at the College, where his uncle and namesake had been a Fellow, but transferred to Trinity in 1646, and was elected a Fellow there in 1649. In 1655 he […]

The cataloguing project of the rare book collections in the Perne Library is now in its sixth and final year. More than three thousand electronic records have been created and added to the on-line library catalogue, with details about the existing editions and relevant information about individual copies. Along the way, the two cataloguers have […]

In December, the Cambridge Digital Library launched the presentation of a remarkable collection item from the Peterhouse modern archives.  The Whittle Power Jet papers chronicle the development of the turbo-jet engines of the Second World War.  The papers are largely made up of internal communications from within British Thomson-Houston, a company that played a critical […]

Introduction Peterhouse MS.270, is a breviary or small collection of liturgical texts according to the use of Sarum originating from the fourteenth century, probably from East Anglia.  In the recent catalogue of the medieval manuscripts of Peterhouse, Rod Thomson describes it thus: “Beautifully written, probably by a single scribe, in formal gothic bookhand, with initials […]