John Kemp (antiquary)

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John Kemp or Kempe (1665–1717) was an English antiquarian, known as a collector.[1]

Kemp had private wealth, and lived in the parish of St. Martin-in-the Fields, London. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society on 20 March 1712, and died unmarried on 19 September 1717.[1]

Collection and legacy[edit]

Kemp had a museum of antiquities. It had largely been formed by Jean Gailhard, a Frenchman, who was governor to George Carteret, 1st Baron Carteret. Gailhard sold it to Carteret for an annuity, and Kemp subsequently bought it.[1] The collection drew on that of Jacob Spon, and William Nicolson left an account of it after a visit in 1712.[2] It contained the flint axe found by John Conyers in 1679.[3]

By his will Kemp directed that the museum (with books) should be offered to Lord Oxford or his son for £2,000; The proposal was declined. Robert Ainsworth drew up an elaborate account of Kemp's antiquities entitled Monvmenta vetustatis Kempiana, ex vetustis scriptoribus illustrata, eosque vicissim illustrantia, 2 pts. London, 1719–20: John Ward supplied him with descriptions of the statues and lares, with a discourse De Vasis et Lucernis, de Amuletis, de Annulis et Fibulis, and Commentarius de Asse et partibus ejus which had been printed in 1719.[1]

The collection was then sold by auction at the Phœnix tavern in Pall Mall, London on 23, 24, 25, and 27 March 1721, in 293 lots, for £1,090 8s. 6d. Six classical inscriptions, bought by Dr. Richard Rawlinson, went to Oxford, and appeared in the Marmora Oxoniensia.[1]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Lee, Sidney, ed. (1892). "Kemp, John (1665-1717)" . Dictionary of National Biography. 30. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  2. ^ Joseph M. Levine (1991). Dr. Woodward's Shield: History, Science, and Satire in Augustan England. Cornell University Press. p. 214. ISBN 0-8014-9935-6.
  3. ^ Joseph M. Levine (1991). Dr. Woodward's Shield: History, Science, and Satire in Augustan England. Cornell University Press. p. 141. ISBN 0-8014-9935-6.

Attribution

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainLee, Sidney, ed. (1892). "Kemp, John (1665-1717)". Dictionary of National Biography. 30. London: Smith, Elder & Co.