The remains of the late Viscount Royston, with a memoir of his life.
London, John Murray 1838.
8vo. (2) + 332pp, with 5 leaves of added manuscript text inserted between p.(184) and p.(185), and a tipped-in manuscript copy of a four-page letter to Lady Caledon (Lord Royston’s sister), dated 1838. Contemporary full panelled red calf, gilt, the sides slightly rubbed and scratched. Ink marginal notes on title leaf and in margins of p.3 and p.7, and ink presentation inscription dated 11 December 1863 from Amelia, Dowager Countess of Mexborough (another of Lord Royston’s sisters).
A memorial volume commemorating the life, travels and literary output of Philip Yorke, Viscount Royston (1784-1808), son and heir of the 3rd Earl of Hardwicke, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland in the “Ministry of All the Talents” in 1806-7. Royston, a Cambridge-educated nobleman of intellectual tastes, was not able to make the conventional Grand Tour because of warfare in Western Europe, and chose instead to travel extensively in Russia and the Caucasus, getting as far as Astrakhan, Baku and Tiflis before turning back for reasons of health (and the death of his English servants). On his return journey to England his ship ran aground just off the Baltic port of Memel, and he was drowned along with other passengers and most of the ship’s crew. The book was put together from Royston’s surviving letters home by Rev.Henry Pepys (subsequently Bishop of Worcester), and makes an interesting addition to more familiar contemporary narratives of Russian travel. An unusual feature of the present copy is that it is one of a small number of copies of the book which Royston’s surviving relatives seem to have acquired from the John Murray publishing firm, and which they had bound up with added manuscript text and with tipped-in copies of a letter to Royston’s sister in which a school contemporary attests to Royston’s skill in mathematics and trigonometry.