Social History

The carved chests of the Channel Islands

9th July 2018
'A slightly coloured sketch.'An oaken chest, half eaten by the worm, But richly carved by Anthony of Trent, With Scripture stories from the life of Christ; A chest that came from Venice, and had held The ducal robes of some old ancestor. That by the way—it may be true or false.[From] Rogers’ Italy.By Samuel Elliott Hoskins. Victor Hugo was not, it would seem, the first to transform the carved wooden chests of Guernsey into some other form of decorative furniture. De Beauvoir De Lisle got there before him!

Elie Brevint on people and things

5th January 2018
More exceptionally interesting 17th-century observations from Elie Brevint. Brevint (1587-1674) was minister of Sark from 1612. His father Cosmé, also a minister, was a Huguenot refugee from Angoulême who had accompanied Helier De Carteret from Jersey in his colonisation of Sark. Transcriptions and microfilm of Elie's 14 Notebooks, which were found in a loft in Sark in the 19th century, are held in the Priaulx Library. They are written in French. The picture above is a detail from Boethius, In philosophia consolationem, Strasbourg 1501, one of the rare books in the Library’s collection.

From our family albums

8th September 2017
Proper names from the captions to the photographs in From our family albums (1998), edited by Julie Hargetion of the Société Guernesiaise. Surnames in capitals. This book and its two companion volumes may be viewed by visitors to the Library, but permission for reproduction of the photographs can only be obtained by going through the books' compilers, the Family History Section of the Société Guernesiaise, from whom copies of the books may also be purchased.

Local dishes supply food for thought

16th May 2017
From The Guernsey Press' 'Signpost to yesterday' series, April 9 1952. By 'Guernesiais.' The writer makes the contentious claim that Jersey Wonders are actually from Guernsey, and as for bean jar ... The old Guernsey recipe book illustrated is from the Library collection.

Devotedly loyal islands in collision with the Government, 1845

10th May 2017
The Eclectic Review, Vol 17 (1), 1845, pp. 540-555. 1848 is the year of revolution in Europe; in Guernsey the stirrings of the people, such as they were, occurred just a few years earlier. (The headings have been added for ease of reading.) The illustration is a print from the Library Collection dated c 1835, published by M Moss, and showing the interior of the Royal Court in St Peter Port. 'May this people ever beware of apeing the follies of their neighbours, and retain their own dignified simplicity! For it they are pre-eminent. Should they ever stoop to become imitators, they can never get beyond an humble mimicry of that which is useless and effeminate in the customs of England.'

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