A Leaf from the Family Expositor

3. A leaf from Doddridge’s Family Expositor.1

I have discussed this previously in “Joseph Angus and the Use of Autograph Letters in the Library at Holford House, Regent’s Park College, London.” Baptist Quarterly 40 (2004): 455-76. Here is that excerpt:

So keen was Joseph Angus on acquiring literary autographs that he was willing to trade Thomas Raffles some of his most valued religious manuscripts, such as one of the five volumes he had recently acquired of Philip Doddridge’s MS. of the “Family Expositor” (published in 6 volumes between 1739 and 1756). Apparently, the offer was too good for Raffles to refuse, and the single MS. volume was sent, along with a collection of Baptist letters, in exchange for several packages of literary autographs from Raffles. In the Joseph Angus--Thomas Raffles Correspondence, fall 1857 (Eng. MS. 372, f. 47d-i, Raffles Collection, JRULM), we find this letter from Angus to Raffles, affixed to the inside front cover of the Doddridge volume which Angus sent to Raffles, which confirms the exchange of autographs: `

For Rev.d D.r Raffles

Autograph of Doddridge’s Esp[ositor]:

I Cor. & part of ii Cor.

A small acknowledgement of many similar favors


Joseph Angus

Jan.y 1858.

Raffles had the volume handsomely bound and added to his autograph collection; at some point, however, the volume was returned, either to Angus or his children, most likely before the Raffles Collection was purchased in 1896 by Mrs. John Rylands as the initial acquisition of the John Rylands Library in Manchester. In May 1943 the volume of the Expositor was finally returned by the two surviving daughters of Joseph Angus to its original home in the Angus Library (see Reports of Regent’s Park Baptist College [1942-43], p. 12).

1 Joseph Angus Collection, Angus Library, Regent's Park College, Oxford.