Houghton MS Eng 584

Title Miscellany poems by severall hands. Collected by B. Cumberlege. 1703
Archive Houghton Library
Call Number Houghton MS Eng 584
Complete Yes

B. Cumberlege, 1703.

Contains title pages for many individual poems.

34 poems on the Table of Contents, but some grouped together under headings, so really closer to 50 items.

Occasional and religious poems, many about friendship, and a high proportion by the compiler. Position appears to be Jacobite and Roman Catholic.

Region of creation possibly London, based on later Cumberlege family records. 

Format Octavo
Book Size 21.5cm x 13.5 cm
Filled Page Count 102 leaves
Item Count 34
Poem Count 34
First Line Index Yes
Digitized No
Additional Genres
Print Sources
Major Themes

Major themes prominent among the manuscript contents in alphabetical order.

Minor Themes

Other themes of interest among the manuscript contents in alphabetical order.


Houghton MS Eng 584.” Manuscript Verse Miscellanies, 1700–1820, edited by Betty A. Schellenberg, Simon Fraser University, https://mvm.dhil.lib.sfu.ca/manuscript/376. Accessed .

Created 2020-04-23 5:10:19 PM
Updated 2023-07-25 11:19:37 AM
Feature Note
Author attributions



Calf, subsequently rebacked. Likely copied into gatherings, then post-bound.

Decorations - hand-drawn

Ink and wash landscape drawing on the main title page. 

Title pages on pp. 1, 24 and 183 all include coloured ink (red and yellow). 


Two or three intermingled hands, but all the title pages are seemingly in the hand I'm assuming is B. Cumberlege because it's also responsible for most of his original poems. This hand (also responsible for the Table of Contents) is clearly the organising force/ primary compiler. 

Indications of use

Multiple intermingled hands suggest a team effort, though the volume was clearly organised by Cumberlege. 

The decorative and coloured title page for the final poem, an original poem called “An Elogium upon a Monastick Life” on p. 183, demonstrates pride in the composition. It was seemingly added around the same time as the other coloured title pages (on p. 1 and 24) ie. at the beginning of the compositional process. This is the only item not paginated and the neatness of the hand differs from the previous items, because the book is otherwise increasingly messy. 

Item formatting

Longer poems have title pages and/or running title headings.

Lines between items (sometimes single, sometimes double, sometimes broken) and decorative designs at the end of some items. 

Original poetry

Yes, many items by Cumberlege and a "Mr. Tate." Mostly religious or occasional. 

Ownership mark

B. Cumberlege's name appears throughout, as well as on the title page.

Bookplate of Frederick Lewis Gay (Harvard alum "class of 1878"). 

Page layout

Paginated up to the final item. 

Table of Contents

Yes, at the beginning of the volume in Cumberlege's hand.

Title page

Yes, with an ink and wash drawing.

Also includes title pages for some individual poems.