Thomas Cranmer's books (1500, 1536)

Lower Library F.6.12–13 (G.A.S. 24), M.12.1 (1–2)

Thomas Cranmer amassed a valuable scholarly library of theological texts containing around 500 printed and 100 manuscript books. They are easily identified by his practice of inscribing the title page 'Thomas Cantuarien'. After the accession of Mary I, Cranmer was imprisoned and his library confiscated by the Crown. Most of his books were acquired by Mary's steward, the Earl of Arundel, then passed to his son in law Lord John Lumley who also added his name to the books.

Already possessing a vast library of his own, Lumley gave duplicate copies to his friends, one of whom, William Branthwaite, became Master of Caius and bequeathed his books to the Library upon his death in 1619. It is ironic that three of Cranmer's books found a final home in the College which had been granted its foundation charter by Mary I.

Sarum Missal (1498) << Thomas Cranmer's books (1500, 1536) >> Cambridge bindings (1503–1509)