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John Taylor correspondence

Call Number: OSB MSS 42

Scope and Contents

The John Taylor Correspondence consists of letters sent to John Taylor, publisher. The collection spans the dates 1803-1861.

The majority of the letters concern publication business, particularly requests for payments and advances, and some contain personal news as well. Correspondents include the Revs. Basil and Harvey Marriott; Alexander Bunn Haden; Charles Caleb Colton; and the topographical writer Richard Ayton, whose letters date from the last year of his life and cover literary and political opinions as well as the gradual decline of his health. The letters of Octavius Gilchrist discuss progress on his edition of the poetry of Richard Corbet, as well as other literary projects.

Other correspondents, including John Knott and John and Philip Twells, share Taylor's interest in currency reform and offer news of the Currency Society.


  • 1803-1861


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The John Taylor Correspondence is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Bequest of James Marshall and Marie-Louise Osborn. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.


0.42 Linear Feet (1 box)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


The collection consists of letters addressed to Taylor by various correspondents, including Richard Ayton, Octavius Gilchrist, Alexander Haden and Harvey Marriott. Most concern publishing business or personal news; several discuss currency policy, an issue of great interest to Taylor.

JOHN TAYLOR, 1781-1864

John Taylor was born in Nottinghamshire in 1781. Taylor moved to London about 1806, becoming a partner in the publishing firm Taylor & Hussey (later Taylor & Walton). Taylor published several works attributing the letters of "Junius" to Sir Philip Francis, an identification still widely accepted today, and served as editor of the London Magazine in 1821-24. Taylor's literary friends included Charles Lamb, Thomas Hood, and Samuel Coleridge.

Taylor, perhaps influenced by his brother, the banker James Taylor (1788-1863), was opposed to the currency policies of Sir Thomas Peel, and authored several books and pamphlets on the subject of currency reform, including "Currency Fallacies Refuted and Paper Money Vindicated" (London, 1833) and "The Monetary Policy of England and America" (London, 1843). His other works include "The Great Pyramid: Why Was It Built?" (London, 1859), and articles on antiquarian subjects for Macmillan's and the Gentleman's Magazine.

John Taylor did not marry. He died in Kensington on July 5, 1864.
Guide to the John Taylor Correspondence
Under Revision
by Beinecke Staff
June 1996
Description rules
Beinecke Manuscript Unit Archival Processing Manual
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

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