Books and Borrowing 1750-1830

Tag: Selkirk Subscription Library

Hallowe’en Reading

Happy Spooky Season to all our loyal readers! Having just come back from the USA, where Hallowe’en is everywhere throughout October, I thought I would see what kinds of spooky reading events I could find in our dataset. A quick keyword search in our new digital resource (soon to be fully open to the public!) […]

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Forgotten Best-Sellers: ‘Bell’s Surgery’

‘Bell’s Surgery’, or, to give it its proper title, A System of Surgery, was published in its first edition in six volumes between 1783 and 1788. It was a popular textbook that became what Richard Sher describes as a ‘strong seller’[1] with seven editions in print by 1801. Its influence went beyond its sales figures. […]

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Novel Reading in Post-Enlightenment Scotland: a PhD

Hello! My name is Cleo O’Callaghan Yeoman, and I am delighted to be joining the Books and Borrowing team as I begin my SGSAH/AHRC-funded PhD this month, co-supervised by the Universities of Stirling and Glasgow. My PhD project centres upon analysing the relationships between novel reading and forms of ‘improvement’ within Post-Enlightenment Scotland. By combining […]

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A Comparison of the Borrowings of Different Classes at the Library of Innerpeffray, John Gray Library, Haddington, and Selkirk Subscription Library

In my last blog post, I discussed the Library of Innerpeffray’s exceptional labouring-class borrowing demographic. Labouring-class people were the driving force for borrowings at Innerpeffray as early as the eighteenth century, contradicting narratives claiming that they only began accessing libraries in the nineteenth century, with access previously exclusive to scholarly, aristocratic, and professional elites. The […]

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