AS a Preface to the
First Volume of The Antiquary, I think that I cannot do better than
reprint my original Prospectus.
"It is with a firm belief in the above sentiments that The Antiquary
has been projected. In spite of the fact that this age lives so much
in the present, worships progress so keenly, and looks forward to
further progress so hopefully, there is in the breast of our 'nation
of shopkeepers ' a deep-seated reverence for antiquity, a religio
loci, which shows itself in the popular devotion to ancient art,
whether in architecture, in painting, in design, or in furniture,
and in the eager reception accorded to fresh discoveries of relics
or works of antiquarian interest, and which finds its expression in
the hearty and general welcome accorded year after year to our
leading Archaeological Societies when they make their annual
excursions and hold their 'Congresses' in pleasant places."
It is hoped that a Magazine devoted to the work of cherishing and
fostering the antiquarian spirit in the various paths of inquiry and
research, will meet with the support which it aspires to merit. The
Gentleman's Magazifie has for some time ceased to fill the position
which Sylvanus Urban once held as the organ of all students of
antiquity; and we desire reverently but hopefully to take up the
work which he too hastily abandoned.
"We shall not, however, allow ourselves to be so restricted iin our
choice of subjects as was our predecessor half a century ago. We
have many other questions to discuss which were unknown to our
grandfathers, or at all events unappreciated by them. The more
intelligent study of History, the wide spread of Art education, the
increased interest felt in the study of local traditions and
dialects, as shown in the establishment of societies for promoting
it; these and other causes have enlarged not only our sphere of
knowledge but also our sympathies.
"Our pages will furnish original papers on such subjects as fall
within the scope of our Magazine, as indicated generally in the
following list; and our columns will also be freely open to
correspondence on Old Abbeys, Alchemy and Witchcraft, Ancient
Ballads and Dramas, Ancient Castles and Seats, Local Antiquities,
Archceology, Architecture, Arms and Armour, Ancient and Modern Art,
Articles of Vertu, Autographs, Bells, Books and Bookbinding,
Bibliography, Eccentric and Forgotten Biography, British and
Anglo-Saxon Literature, The Calendar, Cathedrals, Ceramic Art,
Church Furniture, Church Restoration, Curiosa, Dress and Vestments,
Early Voyages and Discoveries, Early Printing and Block Books,
Epitaphs and Inscriptions, Engravings, Excavations and Explorations
at Home and Abroad ; Exhibitions of Paintings, Sculptures, &c, ;
Family Pedigrees, Genealogy, Heraldry, Illuminated MSS., Inns and
Hostelries, Letters and Extracts from Family Archives, Local
Traditions and Folk Lore, Manorial Customs and Tenures, Meetings of
Learned Societies, Monumental Brasses, Numismatics, Obituary Notices
of Antiquaries, Old English Poets, Travellers, &c,, Parish
Registers, Picture and Art Sales, Provincial Dialects,
Archaeological and Historical Books, Seals, and English and Foreign
"On all these subjects we shall endeavour as well to elicit the
opinions of others as to teach and supply information ourselves; and
we trust that our pages will fortn a medium of intercommunion
between persons of common tastes and pursuits wherever the English
language is spoken.
"With this object in view we invite correspondence from those who
have a right to speak on their special subjects because they have
studied them deeply and lovingly ; and we do not doubt that the
result will be acceptable to a large and increasing number of
readers. It is hoped that in this respect our efforts will be
largely seconded by the secretaries and correspondents of local
"We shall provide a column for inquiries on all subjects of
antiquarian interest, without in any way trenching on the domain of
our pleasant and instructive contemporary, Notes and Qtieries, for
whom we feel a love and veneration second only to that which we
reserve for the laced coat and ruffles of Sylvamis Urba?i. In
another column our Subscribers can make known their wants of scarce
volumes, engravings, prints, &c. We hall also give prominence to all
information relating to art sales, whether past or approaching,
while books of an antiquarian and retrospective character will be
duly noticed, or reviewed at length."
It is for my readers to decide how far the above professions and
promises have been realized : my duty is to thank most sincerely
those writers whose pens have enabled me in some measure, I hope, to
keep faith with the public.
E. Walford, M.A.
Hampstead, N.W., June, 1880.
Here are the first 4
volumes for you and others can be read on the Internet Archive....
| Volume 2 |
Volume 3 |