Rutherford, Jeffrey F (2015-05). Evolution of a 'Literary Man': The 1723 Accounts of Edmund Herbert. Master's Thesis. Thesis uri icon


  • This study examines the 1723 accounts and memoranda of Royal Marine Paymaster, Edmund Herbert. As reflected in his expenses and notes, Herbert was unique in his prolific book collecting and multilingual studies. 1723 marks a critical economic, domestic, and social point in the development of this behavior for Herbert, and will serve as a case study in exploring individual factors in this form of participation in eighteenth century English print culture and genteel society. To this end, priority is given to the precise identification of Herbert's 1723 book titles and creation of the corresponding appendix located at the end of the essay. Emerging trends in book purchases, alongside Herbert's methodology, language studies, and non-literary expenses, will be explored thematically on three levels: the relationship between Herbert's accounting practices and domestic life, Herbert's non-lingual book purchases and their role in Herbert's social status, and the multilingual nature of Herbert's language studies as they progressed throughout 1723. By analyzing the significance behind Herbert's selections in books and their relationship to other immediate factors, this essay aims to reconstruct the motivational causes of Herbert's behavior, both at a private and socially-driven level, with attention given to the application of these findings to larger discussions of eighteenth century book collecting and language study.

publication date

  • May 2015