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The Particulars and Inventories of the Estates of the late Sub-Governor, Deputy-Governor, and Directors of the South-Sea Company:

And of Robert Surman late Deputy-Cashier, and of John Grigsby late Accomptant of the said Company. Together with the Abstracts of the same. Volume I [-Volume II].

London: printed for Jacob Tonson, Bernard Lintot, and William Taylor, 1721 Stock Code: 125826
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A collection of valuable investigative documents produced in the wake of the South Sea Bubble

A scarce collection of over 30 very detailed estate inventories produced during the intense scrutiny of the South Sea Company and its employees in the aftermath of the Bubble. Printed by order of the House of Commons, each inventory has a separate title leaf, pagination, and register, printing in exhaustive details the particulars of the accounts of company directors such as Huguenot financier Sir Theodore Janssen (who had been director of the Bank of England three times), Russia merchant William Astell, and John Blunt, one of the principal architects of the scheme. Also issued separately, they are more commonly found as such in institutions, ESTC locating just seven complete two-volume sets in the UK, 17 more in North America, and none elsewhere.

"In December 1720 both Houses of Parliament called for a series of accounts from the unhappy South Sea Company, designed to elucidate its overt and covert actions in executing its scheme and on 23 and 28 January 1721 two Bills about the directors received the royal assent. The first restrained them from leaving the realm for one year, and required them to draw up inventories of their estates and present them to Parliament. The second disabled them for life from being directors or voters of the Bank of England and the East India and South Sea companies The inventories published in 1721 show that they had contributed to the land boom. Of the 31 directors and governors 16, besides the cashier Knight and his deputy Surman, had bought land in 24 counties, often at extravagant prices Payment, moreover, was sometimes partly made in overvalued South Sea stock and in South Sea bonds" (Dickson, The Financial Revolution in England).

The two volumes contain inventories of the estates of: Sir John Fellowes, Charles Joye, William Astell, Sir Lambert Blackwell, Sir John Blunt, Sir Robert Chaplin, Sir William Chapman, Robert Chester, Stephen Child, Peter Delaporte, Francis Eyles, James Edmundson, Edward Gibbon, John Gore, Sir William Hamond, Francis Hawes, Richard Horsey, Richard Houlditch, Sir Theodore Janssen, Sir Jacob Jacobson, Arthur Ingram, Sir John Lambert, Sir Harcourt Master, William Morley, Ambrose Page, Col. Hugh Raymond, Samuel Reade, Jun., Thomas Reynolds, Jacob Sawbridge, William Tillard, John Turner, Robert Surman and John Grigsby.

A collection of valuable documents providing fascinating insight into the domestic lives and financial transactions of the British aristocracy and upper middle class in the first half of the 18th century.

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2 volumes in 1, folio (320 x 203 mm). Modern red half morocco, black morocco spine label, raised bands bordered with blind double fillet, grey cloth boards edged with gilt scrollwork, edges sprinkled red.


Engraved title pages, head- and tailpieces.


Embossed ownership stamp of William Thomas Morgan to title leaf of first work. Contents lightly tanned and occasionally foxed, else a well-preserved set.


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