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Papers of Nicholas Crouch (ca. 1618 - ca.1690), Fellow of Balliol

The collection consists of 16 manuscripts in various formats, created and used by Nicholas Crouch. They may have been left to or were already in the College on Crouch's death in 1690. RAB Mynors catalogued the five manuscript volumes individually rather than as a related group, while the group of papers listed as MS 455 came to light at Balliol after Mynors had catalogued the other Crouch manuscripts in his original sequence (1-450). In addition to creating these personal manuscripts, Crouch took an active interest in the arrangement of the College Archive and his hand occurs frequently in list of and annotations on administrative records. He also left a significant collection of printed works to the College. For further information on Crouch, see:

  • Andrew Clark's annual lists [in the College Archive]
  • Joseph Foster, Alumni Oxonienses 1500-1714 (1891). Foster refers the reader to [Montagu] Burrows, Register of the Visitors of the University of Oxford 1647-58 [1881].
  • John Jones, Balliol College : A History. 2nd ed.rev. Oxford: OUP, 2005.

Biographical information

Born c.1618, son of Nicholas, of Falldoe [Faldo, now Faldo Farm] in the parish of Highham [Higham Gobion], Bedfordshire. The Crouch family held the manor of Westhey and Faldo for part of the 17th century; see 'Parishes: Higham Gobion', in A History of the County of Bedford: Volume 2, ed. William Page (London, 1908), pp. 344-347. British History Online [accessed 1 April 2016].

Education : Matriculated Balliol College 5 December 1634, aged 16; B.A. 2 June 1638; M.A. 16 December 1641.

Career : Fellow of Balliol from 1640. Foster claims that he was ejected from his fellowship in 1648, but Jones (p.107) narrates that he slipped away from Oxford in 1645, but came back in 1649, and Clark lists him as a Fellow until his death in 1690.

Died c.1690 (on 23 July 1690, and was buried in Balliol chapel, according to Clark's lists). Will proved 28 July 1690. He made bequests to Balliol [see transcript of his will, College Archive MISC 30.13].


Descriptions of MSS 334-6, 339, 355 from R.A.B. Mynors, Catalogue of the Manuscripts of Balliol College Oxford (1963):

MS 334. Nicholas Crouch MD (Fellow of the College 1640-1690), a notebook Pharmacopoeia compiled by him from printed sources (eg Sennert, and Ray's Catalogue of Plants), analysed first under drugs and then under complaints. (C 17) [condition: good] There is no page 8. Images online

MS 335. Nicholas Crouch, Ex Institutionibus Sennerti (editione ut dicitur postrema Witembergae anno MDCXXXIII impressa) Quaedam capit. et pagin. descripta. Notebooks (2 vols) (C17) [condition: good] 335A Images online 335B Images online

MS 336. Nicholas Crouch, a notebook containing a few arithmetical data and a short alphabetical catalogue of medical book, later used (the other way up) to copy verses. (C17) [condition: good] Images online

MS 339Nicholas Crouch, an alphabetical Register of medical prescriptions (many leaves blank). (C17) [condition: fair]. 264pp. Paginated but on rectos only (i.e. odd-numbered pages) 1-11, then every 10pp until 131 only. Another partial numbering sequence is partly cut away from the top outer corner. Images online

MS 355. Nicholas Crouch (see MS 334), Diary for the years 1634-1672, with his College account for 1634-89 (reversing the volume). (mid C17) [condition: good]. End A modern foliation in pencil, every 10 ff. only, 10-250. End B not numbered. End A ff.185r-249v are entirely blank except for the modern foliation, and have not been imaged. End A f.250 is the last used page of End B. Images online

MS 455.1. "Le Catholicisme et la religion chrestienne". On paper: 4 signatures (i3, ii2, iii3, iv2). Paginated 1 - 44; pp.27-28 (probably a single sheet) missing. In French. Not in Crouch's hand. Care: signatures connected by one stitch, page edges in need of flattening and repair. Images online

MS 455.2. List of bishops and archbishops, with some biographical sketches and index covering dates 1564 - 1683. 1st 3 ff not numbered. From 4th folio, paginated 1 - 80 on versos only except 1. Single signature, stitching at what is now p.70-71. From dirt/discoloration on pp.70-71, has spent a long time with those as the outside pages. Images online

MS 455.3. Measures and calculations of contents of plate tankards belonging to Thomas Austin, James Austin, Francis Edwards, Thomas Wigmore and Thomas Stephens. One page with list of statute prices of wheat and malt. Cf. 17th century Bursars' Book [College Archive] with plate inventories and lists in the hand of Nicholas Crouch. Dated June 1668 and May 1669. 2 bifolia. Images online

MS 455.4. Lists in (mixed) Latin and Greek of books to be studied for medicine. 1 bifolium with list of figures on p.1 only. 3 bifolia. Images online

MS 455.5. 9 pages sewn together. "De Crepusculis" - calculations about the circle. Chronological lists of historical rulers and their contemporaries - Old Testament prophets, Kings of Israel, of Judah, popes, Assyrian monarchs, Persian monarchs, Graecian monarchs, Roman emperors, Eastern and Western emperors, German emperors, British dynasties, British kings, Saxon monarchs, Danish kings, Norman kings, Plantagenets, Lancastrians, and Tudors. Not numbered or foliated. Numerous blank stubs. Images online

MS 455.6. One page of the Hebrew alphabet and its pronunciation. Images online

MS 455.7. Medical remedies and their doses and temperatures. 2 bifolia. Images online

MS 455.8. Tables of measurements and their multiples, of liquids and solids. One bifolium headed "Mensura Duplex est vel Applicationis-Capacitatis quae etiam duplex est vel Aridorum-liquidorum. One bifolium of tables of multiples. 3 bifolia. Images online

MS 455.9. Lists of bishops, their dioceses and university colleges they attended; dates of their election covering the dates 1608 - 1699. F.1 begins "A Catalogue of Bishops..." 1 signature of 5 bifolia = 20pp. Stitched. Only ff.1-9 are foliated. Images online

MS 455.10. List of bishops and their sees. List of heads of Cambridge colleges. "Bishops Names. Deans Names. Bishoprick Names." "Oxford University Bishops" - names, colleges, sees and dates covering 1234 - 1687. First section paginated, but on rectos only. After p15, pages are a different shape (quires of different paper sizes sewn together later) and foliation of the second section starts again at f.1. For the purposes of digital imaging, the first section is designated MS455-10 and the second MS455-10A. Images online

MS 455.11. 17 pages sewn together. Itineraries. Lists of places between London, and the destinations, by direct and indirect routes (2 pages). "Roades Direct = Dependent" (2 pages). "Crosse-Roads. Principall" (3 pages). "Crosse-Roads Accidentall" (one page). Index (7 pages). Images online

MS 458. 2 small notebooks covered in grey paper, C17. Both [condition: good]

  • A: French vocabulary. Note at end: ' B Brought from Oxon: May 16. 1649 & Novem. 14' followed by list of books 'Librorum Catalogus.' 60 pp (38 pp of text).
  • B: Prayers in French and Greek. 16 pp. (8 pp of text)
  • C 1 folded A3 leaf of French vocabulary.
  • D 1 folded A3 leaf of French vocabulary.

Images online

- Original list 09/09/1992. Updated by Rachel Kemsley, March 1995. Placed online and updated by Anna Sander, 2010. Updated by James Howarth, May 2018

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