Oxford University Society of Bibliophiles

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Oxford University Society of Bibliophiles
OUSB Device.jpg
Founded 1950 (restored 2008)

Society officers, Michaelmas Term 2015

Honorary President Henry Woudhuysen, Rector, Lincoln College
Honorary Vice-President Paul W Nash, Bodleian Library
President John Ryan, Lincoln
Vice-President Matilde Malaspina, Lincoln
Secretary Paul Ostwald, Regent's
Treasurer Rosemary Jeffreys, Lincoln
Senior Committee Cristina Dondi, Giles Mandelbrote, Scott Mandelbrote, Richard Ovenden, William Poole, Derek Walker, Julia Walworth.


The Oxford University Society of Bibliophiles is a book collecting and bibliophile club run by, and primarily for, students at Oxford University. It was founded in 1950 by a group of young bibliophiles headed by John Granger, Bent Juel-Jensen and R. John Rickett, and the first meeting was held in Hilary Term of 1951.[1] For fifty years the Society held regular lectures, visits and other events during the University terms, and many of the leading bibliographers, librarians, book collectors, booksellers and other literary figures of the period spoke to the Society or hosted visits. Many of the Society's junior members went on to become prominent figures in the world of books, and some later served as senior members of the Society. One of the most influential members was John Sparrow, Warden of All Souls, who encouraged a love of books and manuscripts in a generation of students, and hosted a termly "Warden's Meeting"[2] at which members were encouraged to bring items from their own libraries to pass round and say a few words about; the tradition of the "Warden's Meeting" continued after 1986, when the Warden himself was too ill to host the meetings and, indeed, after his death in 1992. Another of the Society's traditions was the quality of the termly programme cards, often produced by the leading printers and private presses of the age, including the Oxford and Cambridge University Presses, the Rampant Lions Press, the Samson Press, the Fantasy Press, the Kit-Cat Press, Big Wheel Press, the Perpetua Press, the Incline Press, the Whittington Press, the Libanus Press, the Rocket Press, the Stanbrook Abbey Press and the Stamperia Valdonega.[3]

After a period of difficulties and disrupted activities in the last decade of the twentieth century, the Society closed in 2000, when interest among the students had declined so far that a junior committee could no longer be formed. However, due to the efforts of a new generation of Oxford students led by Geri Della Rocca de Candal, Enrico Emanuele Prodi and Matthew Cheung Salisbury, aided by Cristina Dondi, Richard Ovenden and a few surviving members of the former Society (notably Colin Franklin and Paul W. Nash), the Oxford University Society of Bibliophiles was refounded in Trinity term 2008 and became fully active in Michaelmas term in the same year. The first termcard for the new Society was printed by the Rampant Lions Press (and was among the last jobs printed by Sebastian Carter).

The Society's device, shown opposite, was designed by Michael Harvey.

Presidents of the revived Society [2008-present][edit]

  • Trinity Term 2008 to Trinity Term 2009 - Geri Della Rocca de Candal, University College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2009 - William Kelley, St. John's College
  • Hilary Term 2010 - Richard Foster, Corpus Christi College
  • Trinity Term 2010 - Enrico Emanuele Prodi, Merton College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2010 - Mark Scott, Mansfield College
  • Hilary Term 2011 - Marco Paoletti, St. John's College
  • Trinity Term 2011 - Lucy Fisher, University College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2011 - Kelsey Jackson Williams, Balliol College
  • Hilary Term 2012 - Jan Willem Scholten, Corpus Christi College
  • Trinity Term 2012 - Juliet Wesley, Somerville College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2012 - Harriet Rix, St. Edmund's College
  • Hilary Term 2013 - Lara Verena Bellenghi, St. Hugh's College
  • Trinity Term 2013 - Henry Mason, Merton College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2013 - Emma Rix, Corpus Christi College
  • Hilary Term 2014 - Tom Cummings, Corpus Christi College
  • Trinity Term 2014 - Melinda Letts, Christ Church

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  • Michaelmas Term 2014 - Michael Malone-Lee, University College
  • Hilary Term 2015 - Theophilius Kwek, Merton College
  • Trinity Term 2015 - Karen Caines, Trinity College

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  • Michaelmas Term 2015 - Paul Ostwald, Regents Park
  • Hilary Term 2016 - John Ryan, Lincoln College

Presidents of the former Society [1951-2000][edit]

  • J.S. Granger, Jesus - Hilary 1951
  • R.J. Rickett, New - Trinity 1951
  • C.L.M. Johnson, Magdalen - Michaelmas 1951
  • Bent E. Juel-Jensen, New - Hilary 1952
  • D.G. Neill, New - Trinity and Michaelmas 1952
  • B.E. Juel-Jensen, New - Hilary and Trinity 1953
  • J.B. Cameron, New - Michaelmas 1953 to Michaelmas 1954
  • C.M. Lawson, New - Hilary and Trinity 1955
  • P.G. Tudor, St Edmund Hall - Michaelmas 1955
  • N.D. Ing, Balliol - Hilary 1956
  • A.J. Percival, Wadham - Trinity 1956
  • N.D. Ing, Balliol - Michaelmas 1956 and Hilary 1957
  • P.R. Glazebrook, Pembroke - Trinity 1957 to Hilary 1958
  • R.D. Mann, New - Trinity 1958 to Hilary 1959
  • K.J. Wills, Pembroke - Trinity 1959
  • D.P. Walley, Merton - Michaelmas 1959 to Trinity 1960
  • J.A. Adye, Lincoln - Michaelmas 1960 and Hilary 1961
  • S.J. Nuttall, St John's - Trinity 1961 to Hilary 1962
  • N.G. Prowse, Lincoln - Trinity 1962
  • T.S. Meakin, University - Michaelmas 1962 and Hilary 1963
  • P.D. Grinke, New - Trinity 1963 to Hilary 1964
  • C.L. Oastler, University - Trinity 1964
  • A.P.W. Rodgers, Merton - Michaelmas 1964 to Trinity 1966
  • G. Wheatcroft, New - Michaelmas 1966 to Trinity 1967
  • W.H. Kelliher, St John's - Michaelmas 1967 to Trinity 1968
  • G. Stevens Cox, St John's - Michaelmas 1968 and Hilary 1969
  • D.J. Edmonds, St John's - Trinity and Michaelmas 1969
  • J.R. Feisenberger, Wadham - Hilary to Michaelmas 1970
  • R.H. Davies, Mansfield then St Stephen's House - Hilary 1971 to Hilary 1972
  • D.J. Miller, Magdalen - Trinity 1972 to Trinity 1973
  • N. Trent, Balliol - Michaelmas 1973 to Michaelmas 1974
  • Christopher F.R. De Hamel, New - Hilary and Trinity 1975
  • N.W.N. Jones, University - Michaelmas 1975 to Trinity 1976
  • A.C.R. Davis, Worcester - Michaelmas 1976 to Trinity 1977
  • Evan Davies, Linacre - Michaelmas 1977 to Trinity 1978
  • K.E.B. Parkes, Merton - Michaelmas 1978 to Michaelmas 1979
  • E.M. Green, Queen's - Hilary and Trinity 1980
  • M.A. Littlewood, Lincoln - Michaelmas 1980 and Hilary 1981
  • Anthony Cleaver, Queen's - Trinity and Michaelmas 1981
  • Giles H. Mandelbrote, St John's - Hilary and Trinity 1982
  • P.A. Neville, Somerville - Michaelmas 1982 to Trinity 1983
  • L.A. Alston, Brasenose - Michaelmas 1983 and Hilary 1984
  • Justin Howes, Christ Church - Trinity 1984
  • C.J. Collins, St Anne's - Michaelmas 1984
  • T.N. Stokes, Lady Margaret Hall - Hilary and Trinity 1985
  • A.E.M. Shell, St Hilda's - Michaelmas 1985 to Trinity 1986
  • H.M. Gould, Regent's Park - Michaelmas 1986
  • Christopher Shell, Balliol - Hilary 1987
  • Michael Winship, Pembroke - Trinity 1987
  • Simon Pulleyn, Balliol - Michaelmas 1987 to Trinity 1988
  • Scott Mandelbrote, St John's - Michaelmas 1988 to Michaelmas 1989
  • Adam Brown, Balliol - Hilary to Michaelmas 1990
  • Neill Walker, Balliol - Hilary 1991 to Hilary 1992
  • Paul W. Nash, Bodleian Library - Trinity and Michaelmas 1993
  • Ben Fender, Balliol - Trinity 1994 to Trinity 1995
  • K.E. Macnab, Pusey House - Michaelmas 1995 to Hilary 1998
  • Thomas V. Drastik, St Edmund Hall - Trinity 1998
  • Will Eckhert, Trinity - Michaelmas 1998 to Trinity 2000

References[edit]

  • Evan Davies, et al. The Warden's meeting: a tribute to John Sparrow. Oxford: Society of Bibliophiles, 1977.
  • Paul W. Nash and Justin Howes. Bibliophiles at Oxford: a celebration of fifty years of the Oxford University Society of Bibliophiles, 1951-2000, with descriptive notes on the term cards. Witney: Society of Bibliophiles, 2006.
  1. ^ Nash and Howes 2006, p. 11.
  2. ^ Davies et al. 1977.
  3. ^ Nash and Howes 2006, plates 1-4 and pp. 25-180.