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Record 5202

Reading Experience:

" ... the surviving volumes owned by the seventeenth-century yeoman-famer William Dowsing ... reveal a scrupulously methodical reader. Dowsing evidently began a book by jotting down and completing all of the biblical citations ... As John Morrill summarizes, Dowsing 'frequently ... added to the title pages of books and sermons an index of items that were of particular interest to him; frequently he scored the margin with varying degrees of emphasis; and less usually he summarized a passage in the margin or engaged in argument with the author' ... Dowsing ... also wrote his name on his books' title pages ... along with the dates of purchase and reading ..."
Century: 1600-1699
Date: unknown
Country: n/a
Time: n/a
Place: n/a
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:William Dowsing
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Male
Date of Birth n/a
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: Yeoman farmer
Religion: n/a
Country of origin: n/a
Country of experience: n/a
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Title: books
Genre: Other religious, Unknown
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: owned


Source Information:

Record ID: 5202  
Source - Print  
  Author: Stephen B. Dobranski
  Editor: n/a
  Title: Readers and Authorship in Early Modern England
  Place of Publication: Cambridge
  Date of Publication: 2005
  Vol: n/a
  Page: 61
  Additional comments: n/a

Citation: Stephen B. Dobranski, Readers and Authorship in Early Modern England (Cambridge, 2005), p. 61,, accessed: 21 January 2022

Additional comments:

Quotation from John Morrill, "William Dowsing, the Bureaucratic Puritan," in Public Duty and Private Conscience in Seventeenth-Century England, ed. John Morrill, Paul Slack, and Daniel Woolf (Oxford, 1993) 173-203; 182-83.



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)