Dr W. Jack Rhoden, Programme Leader for History at Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU), has had an article published in the Midland History journal outlining the early history of book collecting by the Cavendish family.

The article, the first such study of its kind, seeks to reveal the extensive book collecting activities of one of the most wealthy and powerful aristocratic families of early modern England. It analyses the early modern book collecting activities of the Devonshire branch of the Cavendish family as an example of elite cultural capital accumulation across multiple generations.

Speaking following publication, Dr Rhoden discussed what readers and prospective students could expect from the article:

“The article will be of interest for those who like book history along with anyone who has visited Chatsworth House and Hardwick Hall and has a general interest in the history of the Cavendish/Devonshire family.

It is also linked to our level 4 module - HIS404: British Libraries, Museums and Archives: A History of Collection, 1600-2000 which provides a general history of British libraries, museums and archives from the collections of wealthy individuals in the early modern period to more middle and working-class collections and the ultimate establishment of state-supported national and public institutions from the mid-18th century to the present day beginning with the British Museum.”

The article, which is now available here to online subscribers of the Midland History journal, is the product of work originally undertaken during Dr Rhoden’s time as a post-doctoral researcher at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire. You can read his full series of blogs, which delve into the intriguing history of a library that has evolved over 400 years, by clicking here.

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