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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Hyde 72

Lysons family letters from Hester Lynch Piozzi

Overview

62 letters from author Hester Thrale Piozzi to the brothers Daniel and Samuel Lysons, many concerning her works on Samuel Johnson.

Dates

  • 1784-1820

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Extent

.4 linear feet (1 box)
This collection consists of 62 letters from Hester Lynch Piozzi: 15 letters to Daniel Lysons, and 47 letters to Samuel Lysons. The early letters to Samuel Lysons from 1784 to 1787 are particularly noteworthy, as they were written while Piozzi was traveling in Europe and relying on his assistance with her Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. (1786) and Letters to and from the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. (1788).

Other letters are largely social in nature, and written mostly in or near London; and in Brynbella near Denbigh, Wales.

Biographical / Historical

Daniel and Samuel Lysons were the sons of the Rev. Samuel Lysons (1730-1804) and Mary Peach Lysons of Gloucestershire, England. Daniel Lysons (1762-1834) graduated from Oxford, and served as the curate of Putney (London, England) from 1789 to 1800. He was a noteworthy antiquary and topographer, and published Environs of London in four volumes from 1792 to 1796. In 1800, he inherited the family estates at Gloucestershire from his uncle, and the following year married Sarah Hardy (ca. 1780-1808). In 1813, he married Josepha Catherine Susanna Cooper (ca. 1781-1868). Daniel's younger brother Samuel Lysons (1763-1819) began studying law in Bath in 1780, where he first befriended Hester Lynch Piozzi (1741-1821) in January of 1784. He later courted two of Mrs. Piozzi's daughters, unsuccessfully. He relocated to London, was called to the bar in 1798, then served as Keeper of the Records in London from 1803 until his death in 1819. Samuel was also an engraver and antiquary, serving as director of the Society of Antiquaries from 1798 to 1809. He illustrated his brother's Environs of London, and the two collaborated on Magna Britannia, Being a Concise Topographical Account of the Several Counties of Great Britain, published in several volumes from 1806 to 1822. The work was cut short by Samuel's death in 1819.

Physical Location

b (shelved with bMS Hyde 70-73)

Provenance:

The bulk of these letters were purchased from Lindsay Fleming by Donald and Mary Hyde in 1952. The Hydes purchased one letter dated 1787 Oct. 22 from Goodspeed in 1962, and the provenance of two other letters is unclear.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

*2003JM-59 (part). Bequest of Mary Hyde Eccles, Four Oaks Farm, Somerville, New Jersey; received: 2004.

Related Materials

This collection represents the bulk of the known letters from Piozzi to the Lysons brothers, but a few other letters are at other repositories, including the Huntington Library, Pierpont Morgan Library, Yale University, Folger Library, New York Public Library, and the National Library of Wales. Many of the letters from the Lysonses to Piozzi are at the John Rylands University Library of Manchester. A collection of Lysons family material, also assembled by Lindsay Fleming, is at Yale University. Additional Lysons papers are at the British Library. Samuel Lysons's scrapbook relating to Samuel Johnson and Hester Lynch Piozzi is at Columbia University.

Separated Materials

Three letters from Samuel Lysons to Piozzi, 1785-1791, are in the Hester Lynch Piozzi Correspondence, MS Hyde 3.

Balderston, Katherine C., ed., Thraliana: The Diary of Mrs. Hester Lynch Thrale (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1942) Bloom, Edward A., and Lillian A. Bloom, eds., The Piozzi Letters: Correspondence of Hester Lynch Piozzi, 1784-1821 (Formerly Mrs. Thrale) (Newark, Del.: University of Delaware, 1989-2002) Clifford, James L., Hester Lynch Piozzi (Mrs. Thrale) (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1941)
All but nine of these letters have been published in Bloom.
  • Balderston, Katherine C., ed., Thraliana: The Diary of Mrs. Hester Lynch Thrale (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1942)
  • Bloom, Edward A., and Lillian A. Bloom, eds., The Piozzi Letters: Correspondence of Hester Lynch Piozzi, 1784-1821 (Formerly Mrs. Thrale) (Newark, Del.: University of Delaware, 1989-2002)
  • Clifford, James L., Hester Lynch Piozzi (Mrs. Thrale) (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1941)

Processing Information

Processed by: Rick Stattler
Link to catalog
Title
Lysons family, recipient. Lysons family letters from Hester Lynch Piozzi: Guide.
Author
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
EAD ID
hou00269

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

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