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Charles Edward Sayle (December 6, 1864 - July 4, 1924)

Charles Edward Sayle (December 6, 1864 - July 4, 1924) was an English Uranian poet, literary scholar and librarian. He was born the son of Robert and Priscilla Caroline Sayle. He later served as an under-librarian at Cambridge University Library. His works include Bertha: a story of love (1885), Wicliff: an historical drama (1887), Erotidia (1889), Musa Consolatrix (1893), Private Music (1911) and Cambridge Fragments (1913). He also edited an anthology of verse, In Praise of Music (1897) and compiled Annals of Cambridge University Library; 1278-1900 (1916).

His obituary on The Times, Saturday, Jul 05, 1924; Issue 43696; pg. 16; col B — Obituary. Mr. C. E. Sayle:

Cambridge is mourning the loss of Mr. Charles Edward Sayle, additional under-librarian of the University library, who died at Cambridge yesterday morning. His death has followed quickly on that of Mr. H. T. Francis, the honorary under-librarian.

Born in 1864, and educated at Rugby, he matriculated in 1883 at New College, Oxford, where he took honours in moderations and Lit.Hum. After a short period in London he returned to his father's town of Cambridge and was for a time engaged on cataloguing work in the libraries of St. John's College and the Union Society. He was incorporated M.A. in 1891, and joined St. John's College. Two years later he entered the library and was appointed assistant librarian in 1910.

His life was devoted to the library and to bibliography, and he was a fine example of the type of man who likes to catalogue things in the right order. He edited the "Annals" of the library, and his chief works for it were a "Catalogue of Early English Printed Books," four vols., 1900-7; a "Catalogue of the Bradshaw Collection of Irish Books," three vols., 1916; and he was engaged on a revised catalogue of the MSS. at the time of his death. He also made a catalogue of early printed books in the McClean Bequest to the Fitzwilliam Museum; and edited the works of Sir Thomas Browne. He was a finished and accurate scholar, and no pains were too great for him to take in pursuit of his work. He was also one of the most helpful people among the very helpful staff of the library; he always seemed to have time to spare any inquirer, and his wide knowledge enabled him to find a quotation or verify a reference in the shortest possible time.

Sayle took a great delight in artistic subjects, especially music, and was an ardent supporter of the Cambridge University Musical Society and Musical Club. He wrote on music, and fostered the taste in others at small musical parties in his charming little house in Trumpington-street. He had a natural gift for winning the affection of young men, especially the more intellectual and artistic among them, and his Sunday evenings were a feature in the life of many a Cambridge student. Sayle was very fond of flowers—especially white flowers—and he sedulously cultivated his garden, hidden away behind his house in Trumpington-street. He once remarked to a friend that he should like to pass away during May Week, with the May Week throng of people around him. He almost had his wish. Never very robust, he had a certain delicacy of mind and constitution. But his heart was in Cambridge, and few members of the University had as great a knowledge of its intimate history, apart from the official, as he had. (http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Times/1924/Obituary/Charles_Edward_Sayle

Charles Edward Sayle's Books on Amazon: Charles Edward Sayle

Further Readings:

Early English Printed Books in the University Library by C. E. Sayle
Paperback: 656 pages
Publisher: Cambridge University Press (April 8, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1108007775
ISBN-13: 978-1108007771
Amazon: Early English Printed Books in the University Library

An erudite and popular librarian, Charles Edward Sayle (1864-1924) devoted his career to cataloguing and editing rare books in the University of Cambridge. His obituary praised him as 'a fine example of the type of man who likes to catalogue things in the right order'. This catalogue of incunabula and early printed books in the University Library was his most important project, taking over a decade to complete. Commissioned by the Library Syndicate in 1894, the catalogue was published in four volumes between 1900 and 1907. Even upon completion, Sayle's list was not final, as the rare book collections at the Library were undergoing a period of great expansion, having grown by a third during his cataloguing work, both through purchases and by donations or bequests. The first volume covers all books from 1475-1500, and books produced from 1501 to 1640 by the most important printers in London.

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Tags: essayist: charles edward sayle, gay classics

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