Richard Towneley 1629-1707

From Book Owners Online

Richard TOWNELEY 1629-1707

Armorial bookplate of Richard Towneley from the front pastedown of DC73.6 UBA, Foyle Special Collections Library, King's College London.

Biographical Note

Of Towneley Hall, Burnley, a member of a long-established Roman Catholic gentry family there. He was a contemporary and associate of scientists of the time including John Flamsteed, Robert Hooke and John Kersey the elder.


The library at Towneley Hall began to be developed by Richard's great grandfather John Towneley (c.1528-1608); it was enlarged by Richard's grandfather, also called Richard, who used an armorial stamp, and by the elder Richard's sons, Charles and Christopher. Their collections were inherited by Charles' sons, Charles and his brother, the Richard Towneley of this entry. Manuscript catalogues of the collection made ca.1702-07 (one in Chetham’s Library, one in Manchester University Library) show that the library then contained over 2000 books. Books and manuscripts from the Towneley family were sold at Sotheby’s in 2 sales in June 1883.

Characteristic Markings

Richard Towneley used an armorial bookplate dated 1702. At least one book from his library has been identified in the Foyle Special Collections Library at King’s College London: DC73.6 UBA, La vita di Carlo Magno Imperadore scritta in lingua jtaliana da Petrvccio Vbaldino cittadin fiorentino (1581).