The Bishop Collection

The Bishop Collection is one of our finest Rare Book collections.

The strength of the collection lies in those areas characteristic of the principal fields of Theology, Scripture, Patristics, Liturgy and Ecclesiastical History. Dogmatics and Moral Theology are less well represented apart from major writers. As a Monastic Library it has an unrivalled collection of Recusant Literature, with many Seventeenth Century manuscript works of devotion and polemic, and lecture notes of university theological courses. The Library houses a number of collections bequeathed to us, including those of Edmund Bishop, close friend of Aidan Gasquet and a specialist in antiquarian liturgy, Archbishop David Mathew, historian of the Stuart period, David Rogers, who assembled one of the finest collections of early editions of the works of St Francis de Sales, and Joseph Gillow, the bibliographer of Recusancy especially in Lancashire. Teignmouth Abbey, the successor Monastery to the community of nuns established in the Sixteenth Century in Dunkirk, presented us with the greater part of their library, and Sir Francis Cruise with his enormous collection of copies of The Imitation of Christ. More unusual is the Gatty collection on sundials, the Hartung collection of ornithology, and sizeable collections of Bibliography, Byzantine studies, and Somerset local history.

The Library is available to visitors, who are welcome to stay in the Guest House, and is rarely without researchers who come from all parts of the world.