Included in the collection are land and notarial papers, privileges of nobility, and other legal documents regarding the operation of a noble estate in early modern France. The most important pieces include the earliest document in the collection, a parchment from 1297 recording the contract between the noble family Caumont and the population of Berbiguières that bestowed noble privileges. There are also 25 documents on parchment from the 14th - 16th centuries. These deal with matters of justice, property rights, the rights of surveillance (droit de guet), and the laws pertaining to the gallows or gibbet. There are also two property and notarial registers of Berbiguières containing hundreds of acts regarding the lordship, its lands, vassals, and tenant farmers, as well as inventories and analyses of titles dating from the 13th century onwards.
Apparently unrelated documents, primarily 17th & 18th century, in French and German, but also a few in Old French, English, Italian, Latin, and Arabic. Many from Bern (some of these are related) and one each from Geneva, Paris, Kensington, & London. Includes apprenticeship papers, monetary accounts, contracts, a marriage announcement, a medical or coroner's report, and a life annuity contract.
Grant, in French, of Sir William de Harcourt, "Seigneur de Boseworthe", and Jane his wife, to Richard de la Sale de Draycote of a cottage and curtilage together with a piece of arable land called Silkhull, for the term of Richard’s life, in return for two sous in sterling payable at the feasts of the Purification and of St. John the Baptist, the cottage to revert after Richard’s death to his daughter Mergrete, after her death to Thomas de Spilesby, and after his death to Robert le Fitz. 27 lines written in brown ink, indentured at head, vellum tag without seal, endorsements; a few small holes and marks occasionally touching a few letters, some light cockling. Witnessed by John de Lenere, Robert de Cateby, Symond le Hopper, William Prat, and Robert le Bacstere.
Various legal and family documents and correspondence, some from Perigord and the south-west region of France, others from the Savoie, north-east France, and Scotland. Included are military documents, business documents, genealogies, heraldic documents, titles of nobility, court documents, property and tax documents, household inventories, mariage contracts, wills, royal ordinances, and documents linked to the Siège de la Rochelle, mazarinade; Convocation of nobles for "Assemblée des trois-Etats," 1789; and the Vendée in 1798. Also included are documents about a nurse, a marriage portion, payment of feudal taxes, etc.
Archive/Manuscript — 1 v. (168 leaves): vellum, 20 cm.
Included are the following parts: Calendar, Hours of the Cross, Hours of the Holy Ghost, Hours of the Virgin, Office of the Dead, Penitential Psalms, Lessons from the Four Gospels, Litany of the Saints, and Diverse prayers. There are five miniatures and twenty large initials done in the Franco-Flemish style which followed the school of the brothers Van Eyck; the illumination also shows the influence of the School of Fouquet.
The papers of and/or pertaining to the Robillard de Champagné family from the Saintonge in southwestern France and some of their descendants, the Borrowes family. Materials consist of ancestries, baptismal records, correspondence, court documents, financial documents, marriage certificates, notes about the papers by descendants, and more.
A contemplative manuscript evidently made for a Franciscan nun, containing twenty-four meditations on the Sacrament (folio 47 v), forty prayers to Christ (folio 58 r), and meditations on Christ's temptations in the desert (folio 70 r). Also includes a series of prayers to be said when putting on one's clothes in the morning (folio 102 v).
A record of marriages and property transactions of the Pichard family of St. Julien, France. The record was begun by Anthoine de Pichard in 1631, just after his ennoblement in 1627, the legal record of which is also preserved in these pages. After an apparent lapse of over a century, Etienne de Pichard added new entries from 1774 to 1779. Most of the entries are retrospective compilations, often transcriptions from the parish records of St. Julien, covering events from 1535-1779.
Mostly printed material, these poems celebrate marriages, funerals, births, farewells, New Years, inaugurations and installations, and fests and feasts. The collection concentrates on Lower Saxony in the era of George I, elector of Hanover and King of England. An indication of the many-layered culture of this society is the welter of languages used in these tracts. In addition to Latin and German, the principal languages, there are verses in French, Italian, Greek, Hebrew, Dutch, and Niederdeutsch. The French verses date from the reign of George I, who was inclined to imitate the court of Louis XIV. One of the Niederdeutsch poems is a burlesque on a betrothal, indicating that the Low German dialect was considered appropriate for joking and ribald humor. Many typefaces were used; many of the works were printed on the first presses of a particular city. At Lüneburg there was no press before 1616; this town is represented by five manuscripts.
Box 1: nos. 1-100 and 3 unnumbered fragments -- Box 2: nos. 101-140.