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The Dewar Manuscripts


Author: John Dewar
Publisher: William Maclellan, Glasgow, 1963
25 sections, 27.5 x 19.5 cm (untrimmed). outer pages smudged, no endpapers.

Quirky publication with text pages printed on handmade feel paper and the image pages printed on modern clay paper.

'John Dewar was a Gaelic-speaking native of Arrochar (Dunbartonshire) who lived from 1802 to 1872. Paid by the duke of Argyll, he spent the last ten years or so of his life wandering around the West Highlands taking down historical tales in Gaelic from the mouths of the people. These were collected by his principal patron, John Francis Campbell of Islay (the duke’s cousin) into ten manuscripts, seven of which are in the Argyll Papers at Inveraray Castle, and three of which are in the National Library of Scotland in Edinburgh, consisting of altogether 4,337 pages of writing. Taken together, these form a chaotic but priceless collection of traditional stories that may be described as ‘the people’s history of the West Highlands, in their own language, from 1306 to 1752’.

If you pick up the book from the Guild bindery postage will be refunded.