The History and Antiquities of Haddon Hall by Samuel Rayner

Derby Museums has purchased the book ‘The History and Antiquities of Haddon Hall’, by Samuel Rayner.  The book contains ‘thirty two highly finished drawings with an account of the hall in its present state’ and was published in 1836 by Robert Moseley, Derby.

We bought this book last year but it was in a pretty poor state.  Since then Matt Edwards has been busy conserving the book and has rebound it.  The book  suffers from a bit of of foxing and has been damp at sometime in its history, but atleast now it is stable and looking much better.














This book was the first book to be published solely on the subject of  Haddon Hall and it contains details about the history of the building, the families that owned it and descriptions of the rooms and gardens.  It also brought the legend of Dorothy Vernon’s elopement with John Manners further into the mainstream.

Dorothy was born around 1545 and was the daughter of George Vernon, the ‘king of the peak’.  She married John Manners, inherited Haddon Hall and the estate passed out of the Vernon family’s hands.  This sounds straight forward but there has been much debate about their marriage, mainly centered on whether they eloped or not.  For more info see David Trutt’s Haddon Hall website.

What does seem to be true is that this story was embellished by the 18th and early 19th century caretakers and guides of the then uninhabited Haddon Hall.  Samuel Rayner talks about the guide William Hage ‘who long had the care of the house and gardens here, and the office of guide to the visitors’.

The door that Dorothy eloped through and the ‘Love steps’ were pointed out and feature in quiet a few of the travel writings of the time, including as illustrations in Rayner’s book.   The legend would later be told in various novels, and on stage and screen.

You can download PDFS of the text and illustrations from Samuel Rayner’s book from David Trutt’s Haddon Hall website.

Samuel Rayner was the head of a very artistic family. His wife Ann produced Ashford Black Marble diamond engravings– like the one we were outbid on – and their children included Louisa and Margaret Rayner who were also both talented artists.  The whole family painted at Haddon and you can see some of their work here.

6 Responses to The History and Antiquities of Haddon Hall by Samuel Rayner

  1. vanessa storey says:

    I have a copy of the same in a similiar original condition the cover has a blackish swirly cover with a label inside the front hard cover ‘R Mosely Carver and gilder to the King, jeweller, silversmith picture gallery and fancy repoistory Derby.’ It also has an inscription by a Charles Edmund Wedgewood Wood.

  2. Matt Edwards says:

    Hi Vanessa.

    The label inside the cover is a ‘bookplate’ they usually bear the name of the owner and a family coat of arms. The book you have would have been in the library of ‘R. Mosley’ at some point. Could I ask if the spelling of ‘Mosely’ is correct?

    Robert Moseley was the proprietor/ publisher of the Haddon Hall book. I am trying to find out if this is the same Robert Moseley, Carver and Gilder to the King, also based in Derby. It would seem he had variety of trades if so.

    Moseley also published the print of ‘The Mechanic’s Institute, 1839’ from a drawing by also Samuel Rayner. This is in the Derby Museums collection and can be found on this blog.

    The bookplates in our edition are that of ‘Sir Gilbert Greenhall Bart, Walton Hall’ and ‘Charles C. Handford’.

    I’m afraid I don’t have any information regarding ‘Charles Edmund Wedgewood Wood’ but thank you for letting us know about your copy.

    Matt Edwards
    Derby Museums/Bookbinder

  3. David Trutt says:

    I am delighted to see that you have used material from my Haddon Hall website My introduction to Haddon Hall was a number of years ago as a side trip from the Gilbert & Sullivan Festival in Buxton. I was taken by the romantic legend of the elopement of Dorothy Vernon and John Manners. This has led to an exhaustive collection of Haddon Hall books and prints. The website contains many hard to locate tales, poems, etc. of the Hall and the Elopement. All are available as pdf downloads.
    David Trutt,
    California, USA

  4. Hello David,
    Thanks for commenting. I found your website really useful and hopefully I have signposted interested people towards it. Also glad to hear that you made it to the Gilbert and Sullivan Festival here in Buxton!

  5. Clive says:

    I have a copy of this book as above in similar condition the cover however is a pressed leather effect with scroll work and guild work highlighting the title ILLUSTRATIONS AND HISTORY OF HADDON HALL. All prints present plus the six extra supplement plates. I am looking to sell and would normally list on ebay but welcome contact if you would like to know more and see any pictures etc. lots of foxing. Clive

  6. Helllo Clive,
    Thanks for the message. We are not looking to buy another copy but thanks for thinking of us. Good luck with it on ebay!

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