An expert appearing on Antiques Roadshow, the popular BBC TV programme, was left stunned and trembling when a 17th-Century notebook was brought in to be appraised.
The Shakespearean notebook, described as “one of the most remarkable items to ever feature on the Antiques Roadshow”, has notes that were produced during the lifetime of the Bard, and what have been deemed to be “scientific scholarly notes” by Matthew Haley, the manuscripts specialist. It is believed that the notepad originated from a collection that belonged to John Loveday, an 18th-Century antiquarian from Caversham.
The book was discovered by the owner when he was searching through his mother’s belongings. The owner is the five times removed great grandson of Loveday. According to Haley, the notepad contains detailed notes in Latin, which may be the work of a student who was analysing work by the famous playwright. Haley conducted the appraisal at Caversham Park, saying that a great deal more research could be carried out on the item.
The expert further added that although much of the writing was illegible, the odd word could be recognised, and also the odd phrase from Shakespeare’s work. Haley admitted that it was one of the best items to appear on the Antiques Roadshow, and it had left him stunned.
Items like this are highly collectible, and are often displayed for the interest of others, perhaps on an antique coffee table where it may be admired by visitors in a suitable setting. There’s no better time for this than this coming Sunday, which is Cherish an Antique Day.
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