The Life of Sir Thomas Bodley written by himself/Chapter 2
SIR THOMAS BODLEY'S STATUTES
SIR THOMAS BODLEY'S
FIRST DRAUGHT OF THE
OF THE PUBLICK LIBRARY
TRANSCRIBED FROM THE ORIGINAL
COPY, WRITTEN BY HIS OWN HAND,
AND REPOSITED IN THE ARCHIVES
OF THE SAID LIBRARY
FORASMUCH as Experience hath made it apparent in the course of Men's Actions, that no publick Institution nor Foundation whatsoever, wherein a Multitude hath Interest, and where Continuance is required, can produce those good Effects, for which the same was first intended, except the dissolute Demeanours of ill affected Persons be judiciously restrained, by force of Statutes and Provisoes to encounter their Disorders; it is thought in that regard a most necessary Care, to prevent by all good means, what hereafter may befal to the abusing, impairing, or perhaps (which God forbid) to the utter subverting of our Store of Books; which may undoubtedly prove in tract of time, (if God of his Goodness shall, according to the project, prosper our Proceedings) the most absolute and sufficient, for the Advancement of Learning, that hath been hitherto renowned, by any extant Record, in any Part of Europe: We therefore the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, and doctors, together with the Proctors, and Masters, Regents, and non-Regents of the Great Convocation of the University of Oxon, upon often Consultation and Conference had with Sir. Tho. Bodley, &c. Do Ordain and Decree with a solemn Concurrence of all our Voices, and Consents, that according to the Trust which he hath reposed in our careful Government of the Library, and in our frugal Disposition of the Profits of that Land, which he hath given and assigned to the Maintenance thereof, these our Orders, Acts, and Constitutions, shall be by all sorts of Students, to whom they may appertain, most Religiously kept and observed for ever.
Above all things, that may concern the Preservation of this our publick Place of Study, or the Benefit, Use, and Ease of those that shall frequent it, it is deemed expedient, that some one be deputed to the Custody of it, that is noted and known for a diligent Student, and in all his Conversation to be Trusty, Active, and Discreet; a Graduat also, and a Linguist, not encumbred with Marriage, nor with a Benefice of Cure. For it cannot stand with Piety, that such a Charge should admit the continual Society of other publick Imployments; and Marriage is too full of Domestical Impeachments, to afford him so much time from his private Affairs, as almost every Day's necessity of his private Presence will require.
The Course that must be held, in the Election and Admission of a Keeper to his Office, and the manner of delivering the Library-Keys into his Hands, shall be always like to that, which is yearly put in Practice in the Choice of the Proctors. But before the Electors be admitted to come to give their Voices, they shall all take their Oaths in this kind of Form.
I, A. B. do Promise and Swear, by the Faith and Trust that I owe to Almighty God, that in This Election towards a fit and worthy keeper, for the Publick Library of this University, I have no purpose, to confer my Suffrage, in hope of Reward, or in regard, of any Promise, or at the Instance and Intreaty, direct or indirect of any Person, or Persons of what Quality soever: But that among them all that are known or supposed to affect this Charge, I will nominate and choose some such Graduat unto it, as in setting apart all kind of corrupt and partial Inducement, I shall and do repute, in the greatest Sincerity of my Judgment and Conscience, to be the meetest and best qualified Person, to advance with his Sufficiency the Dignity and Honour of this University, and the Publick Good, and Benefit of the Students in the Library.
The Election thus performed, when the Party then elected shall come to be admitted, he shall swear to this Effect:
All and every of the Statutes, Constitutions, and Decrees, either made already, or hereafter to be made that may in any wise concern the Duty of the Keeper, and good Estate of the Library, I will observe in mine own Person, and to the uttermost of my Power, will cause to be observed by all other Persons, to whom the same may belong, as I hope to be saved, by God's infinite Mercy, thro' the Merits of Christ Jesus, revealed unto me, by his Holy Evangelists.
It is further understood, that the Library Keeper shall never be enforced to relinquish his Office, but with his own free Assent and good-liking; unless upon Desert, for some heinous Offence, or apparent Insufficiency, he shall be adjudged unworthy to be continued in his Charge. And then in that Case, or by whatsoever means his Place becometh void, be it by his Death, or Resignation, or other incident Occasion, the Vice-Chancellor or his Deputy, within three Days next ensuing, shall give Orders for the Summons of a solemn Convocation, and there in that sort, as we have formerly prescribed, and is usually observed in the Election of the Proctors, proceed to make Choice of another to succeed.
And now to the end it may be known, what doth chiefly belong to his Function and Charge, it is first determined and decreed, That he shall take the care of keeping, and likewise of continuing the great Register-Book, which is chained to the Desk, at the upper broad Window of the Library: In which there are to be inrolled, and so from time to time recorded, as their Numbers shall augment, the particular Names and Gifts of as many, as have conferred either Books, or Mony, or other things of Worth for the Benefit and Good of Students in the Library. Wherein also the Munificence, not only of great and honourable Personages, but of others of mean and vulgar Callings must be respectively remembred. For in a case of shewing Gratitude, it is meet in all Congruity, that no man be defrauded of that measure of Thanks, that is due unto his Bounty: As commonly few are so careless of a publick good Opinion, but where they know they have deserved, they would be noted for desert. And in that respect we do resolve, that the Keeper shall procure that Book to be written, with a special, fair, and pleasing Hand; and withall to be exposed, where it may be still in sight, for every Man to view, as an eminent and endless Token of our thankful Acceptation of whatsoever hath been given; and as an excellent Inducement, for Posterity to imitate these former good Examples.
An other chief Point of the Keeper's Charge, is to range all his Books, as well of the bigger as lesser fold, according to their Faculties; to assign to every Faculty their Catalogues and Tables; and to dispose of every Table the Authors therein named, according to the Alphabet: Where besides the Author's Name, and the Title of his Work, he must be mindful to express, in what kind of Volume the same was Printed, with a Note of the Place, and Year of that Edition. For it so fareth often with a Number of Students, that the Knowledge of some one of these petty Particulars, may turn them in their Studies to some singular Advantage. Again, whensoever it comes to pass, that of Gift any Gratuity to the University, any Book or Books, Printed, or Manuscripts, or other Writings of Moment, are addressed to the Keeper, to be put among the Rest of his Library-Store; he shall take no longer Respite to see the same effected, than until he may be able, to restore the Defects of the Books and Things delivered; and to trim every Volume, that is not in good Plight, with fit Reparations for Use and Continuance: Whereto the Vice-Chancellor for the time being (whom we do depute, as hereafter shall appear, the Receiver and Guardian of the Library Rents) shall see him furnished with Mony, and other necessary means, to the full of his Occasions: Whereof he must render a particular Account unto the Vice-Chancellor, to the end the same may be produced as Occasion shall be offered, upon the Vice-Chancellor's own Account: But if it be a Benevolence that doth wholly consist of Ready Mony given, and is put into his Hands to be spent upon Books at his Discretion and Election; he shall fulfil, without Delay, the Desire of him that is the Giver, if their be at that time any present Possibility to procure so many Books, as may suffice for so much Mony: But if they cannot be had upon the suddain, he shall move the Vice-Chancellor then being, to have the Mony reserved, with the Library Revenue, till Books may be gotten for it; for which he must lay hold upon the soonest Opportunity, and use his uttermost Husbandry in buying, and Judgment in choosing good Authors and Prints, neglecting no Endeavour, that may make for Discharge of his Duty and Trust, and for the Giver's Contentation, to whom he shall first present in a list the Inscriptions and Prices of every single Book, before he doth possess the Library of his Gift; and then ingross the same again (without any mention of their Prices) upon the standing Register of Benefactors.
But now, for as much as this Magazine of Books, was founded altogether for the Publick and Perpetual Commodity of Students, for which it were meet in many Respects, that they should all be made acquainted, with the Days and the Hours, in which they may be still assured, to find the Keeper in that Place; it is thus enacted and decreed, that he shall make no Exemption of any whole Day in all the Year, but only of the Sabbath, the Nativity of our Saviour, the day of Electing the Proctors, and when the Library shall be visited: Nor yet of any half Days, saving only of the Fore-noons, upon the usual Feasts, and days of Solemn Prayers; or of Sermons ad Clerum; and of the After-noons at all such times, as Publick Disputations are used in Divinity. Nevertheless, it may so happen eft-soons, through a multitude of urgent, and not yet thought upon Occasions, that it will be thought behoveful by the Chief Convocation, to admit the like Cessation, at some other times unmentioned: Which then the Keeper ought to publish, by fixing a Schedule on the Door, that is at the Entrance of the School of Divinity. So that setting aside those former Exceptions, we do Ordain and Enjoyn, that the Keeper himself in Person (not letted with Sickness, or other lawful impediment hereafter expressed) shall come continually to the opening of the Library Doors, and both remain within himself, and give access unto others, in the Morning, from Eight of the Clock to Eleven; and then after Dinner from Two to Five. Which is to be continued from Easter, to the Feast of St. Michael: But for the rest of the Year, from One to Four in the After-noon. At these prescribed Hours he shall also cause to be rung the Warning-Bell of his Ingress and Egress, that Men may shun the Discommodities of repairing thither oversoon, or abiding there too long, which the Difference of Clocks may occasion very often, to the Prejudice and Hindrance of himself as well as others.
Be it always here provided, That for the greater security of the timber Works and Books, no Frequenter of that Place, Graduat or other, nor the Keeper himself, or any Deputy for him, upon any Pretext or Colour, shall enter there by Night, with a Torch, Link, Lamp, Candle, or other kind of Fire-light, upon pain of Deprivation from his Office forever: Nor shall absent himself from thence, but in Cases approved (which shall be specified hereafter) for the space of one Day, or half-day, or any of those Hours, that have bin formerly mentioned, upon pain of forfeiting twenty Shillings, for every time of his Absence, to be defalked from his Salary, and converted to the encreasing of the Books of the Library.
Moreover, as it may be lawful and free for all comers in (being qualified in such sort, as we shall after declare) to peruse any Volumes, that are chained to the Desks, in the Body of the Library, not forgetting to fasten their Clasps and Strings, to untangle their Chains, and to leave as they found the Books in their Places; (whereas otherwise for their Negligence, they shall be punished by the Purse, at the Will and Arbitriment of the Vice-Chancellor) so for the smaller sized Volumes, in Quarto and Octavo, and such as are within the Grates, and under the Custody of the Keeper alone, that they may not be wasted with much handling and tossing (being Books of special Worth, for their Antiquity or Rarity, Costliness, or Beauty, or other note of prime Account) it shall be a part of the Keeper's Duty, when any Man is desirous to use any of these kinds, to deliver them out by Hand, and by Tale; and with Condition, that they shall be studied there in Sight, and after presently restored, before the Person goe from thence, upon pain of Satisfaction to the double Value of every Book detained; and (if so be it shall prove a wilful Fact) perpetual Expulsion out of the Library.
Howbeit, because it is meet, we should afford some Leisure to the Keeper, for his private Study and Contemplation, whereof we should make but a slender Allowance, in case he shall be forced to serve the Turns of every one, as oft as they require to have the use of such Books; it hath been therefore thought expedient, to entertain a daily Minister, which must be evermore at hand, to aid and assist him, and to attend his Directions in all Occasions in the Library; Who must be sworn to be faithful, and for his Skill must be sufficient to seek out, and distribute any Books that are demanded; of which the Keeper himself, or (when he shall be absent) his lawful Deputy shall give out with his own Hands those within the Grates, and but Six at a time of one sort or other: Which is precisely all the stint, whereto the Keeper shall be subject by our Constitutions; unless by himself he will be won to gratify some Persons by exceeding that Number: Wherein we do require, that he would carry himself uprightly, and content every Student with due respect to his Degree.
And sith the sundry Examples of former Ages, as well in this University, as in other Places of the Realm, have taught us overoften, that the frequent Loan of Books, hath bin a principal Occasion of the Ruin and Destruction of many famous Libraries; It is therefore ordered and decreed to be observed as a Statute of irrevocable Force, that for no Regard, Pretence, or Cause, there shall at any time, any Volume, either of these that are chained, or of others unchained, be given or lent, to any Person or Persons, of whatsoever State or Calling, upon any kind of Caution, or offer of Security, for his faithful Restitution; and that no such Book or Volume shall at any time, by any whatsoever, be carried forth of the Library, for any longer space, or other uses, and Purposes, than, if need so require, to be sold away for altogether, as being superfluous or unprofitable; or changed for some other of a better Edition; or being overworn to be new bound again, and immediately returned, from whence it was removed. For the Execution whereof in every Particular, there shall no Man intermeddle, but the Keeper himself alone, who is also to proceed with the Knowledge, Liking, and Direction of those Publick Overseers, whose Authority we will notify in other Statutes ensuing.
Furthermore, considering that the Keeper may sometimes, upon Urgence of Business, or Indisposition of Body (whereof he must affirm the Truth upon his Oath, being moved thereunto) desire a Dispensation for his personal Absence from his Charge, the Vice-Chancellor or his Substitute shall have absolute Power, in every such Occasion, to condescend to his Request, for the space of Seven Days every Quarter, to be taken either jointly, or at several times, as his need shall enforce him; with this Restriction notwithstanding, that still his Office be supplied by some learned, able Graduat, of whose Fidelity and Truth, there was never any other, but a publick good Report. Or if the Vice-Chancellor think it fit, (for the Choice of every Substitute, must wholly stand with his, or his Deputy's Good-Liking) he shall take a corporal Oath, to the same or like Effect, as the Keeper did himself, at the time of his Admission. But if so be the Keeper's Case be adjudged so favourable, as he may challenge in Reason, a further Enlargement of his Licence, than is formerly expressed; then ought the same to be accorded, by way of common Suffrage, in one of the Congregations; least otherwise in Continuance, the Facility of treating with one Man alone, should draw abuse unto it, of procuring Leave for Longer Absence, than shall be fitting, for the Regiment, and good Estate of such Charge.
These Occasions throughly weighed of the Keeper's excessive and incessant Pains about his Function, although they offer unto him more effectual Opportunities, for the Advancement of his Knowledge, together with his Credit, than to any other Student in the University; (which may give him, in some sort, Contentation for his Pains) for the inabling notwithstanding of his private Estate, which will yield him better Leisure, for the managing and following the Affairs of his Office, we do order and ordain, that besides the annual Stipend of twenty Nobles, which was the ancient Donation of King Henry the IVth, and is to issue forth of the University-treasure through the Hands of the Proctors, he shall enjoy that further Sum of Three and Thirty Pounds Six Shillings and Eight Pence, which is expressed in that Book, by which our late Lands were conveyed unto us, and is to be answered half-yearly by equal Portions; to wit, at the Feasts of St. Michael the Arch-Angel, and the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or within three and thirty Days after: And the same to be extracted out of the Library-Revenue by the present Vice-Chancellor: which is also our Direction for the Payment of ten Pounds to the Keeper's Assistant; and of four Pounds besides to some honest poor Scholar, or Servant of the Keeper, whose weekly Charge and Care must be, whensoever the Keeper shall call upon him, to wipe, sweep, and keep clean all the Library-Books, Tables, Shelves, Seats, Closets, Windows, and whatsoever else is subject to the Annoyance of Dust. Wherewithal we understand, That the Choice of these inferior Ministers, shall be committed to the Keeper's Discretion; the Payment of theirs and all other Stipends, unto the Vice-Chancellor's Care: And their removal from their Places, if so be they shall deserve it, to the Library-Overseers, whose Authority we shall specify in the Statutes following.
We have held it moreover a very needful Caution, for the safer Custody of the aforesaid Revenue, and of all other Sums of Mony, that may hereafter of Benevolence be conferred on the Library, That within the space of Three Days after any Payment made, the same shall be transported to the Place, where the University Rents are kept, and be locked up there in the Iron-Chest provided purposely for it, under three different Locks, with double Keys to every Lock; which are always to remain with the present Vice-Chancellor and Proctors, to be rendred up with the rest of their Keys, at the several times of their Entrance to their Offices. Wherein notwithstanding, that Imployment of the Proctors shall extend it self no further, than to come with their Keys, when they shall be required by the Vice-Chancellor, to open the Chest; and always to be present, when any Mony is brought in, or extracted by him; whereof the Sum is then and there to be registred with the Vice-Chancellor's own Hand, upon some leiger Book lying in the same Chest, or in some other like Place, to be afterward subscribed by the Proctors as Eyewitnesses of it: For so it will appear, how all Expences and Receits do answer each other, at the time of the Audit of the Chest-Account.
Now because it is apparent, that Nothing makes more for the Ease of the Keeper, the Quietness of the Students, the Security of the Books, and the Honour and Dignity of the University, than that we should proceed with some choice Limitation, in the Admission of such Persons, as are to study in the Library; we do utterly reject the Opinion of those, that would have no Exception to no Man's Access: For that a Graunt of so much Scope, would not minister Occasion of daily pestering all the Room, with their gazing; and babling, and trampling up and down, may disturb out of Measure the Endeavours of those that are studious. And therefore not to give way to so great an Inconvenience, we do thus determine and decree; That no Man shall enjoy the Freedom there of Study, but only Doctors and Licentiats of the Three Faculties, Batchelors of Divinity, Masters of Arts, Batchelors of Physick, and Law, Batchelors of Arts of two Years standing, and all other Batchelors; if they come thither in their Habits and Hoods, and there demean themselves with Reverence, in giving Place to their Superiors, and in seemly Performance of all other Duties. Among these in like manner for special Respect, we do reckon the Sons of the Lords of the Parliament, (for of the Lords themselves there may be no question) and as many besides of all Degrees, as of their zealous Affection to all kind of good Literature, have inriched that store-House with their bountiful Gifts: For it might be well reputed a Point of great Ungratitude, if we should not permit such worthy Contributors, to tast of the Fruit of their own Beneficence. Nevertheless, for the tender Care that must be taken, of the endless Preservation of such a Cabinet of the Muses, our Intention is this. That before any Graduat formerly mentioned, or any other Person of note and desert, shall begin to put in Practice his Liberty of Entrance, he shall address himself first unto the Vice-Chancellor or his Substitute, and there in the Presence of the Keeper, take the Oath of Fidelity to the Library, which we appoint to be ministred in Manner and Form as followeth.
You shall Promise and Swear in the Presence of Almighty God, That whensoever you shall repair to the Publick Library of this University, you will conform your self to study with Modesty and Silence; and use, both the Books, and everything else appertaining to their Furniture, with a careful Respect to their longest Conservation: And that neither your self in Person, nor any other whatsoever, by your Procurement or Privity, shall either openly or underhand, by way of embezling, changing, razing, defacing, tearing, cutting, noting, interlining, or by voluntary corrupting, blotting, blurring, or any other manner of mangling or misusing, any one or more of the said Books, either wholly or in part, make any Alteration: But shall hinder and impeach, as much as lieth in you, all and every such Offender or Offenders, by detecting their Demeanour unto the Vice-Chancellor, or to his Deputy then in place, within the next Three Days after it shall come to your Knowledge: so help you God by Christ's Merits, according to the Doctrine of his Holy Evangelists.
Also any other Person, for the Furtherance of his Study in whatsoever Science, although he should be no Contributer, may at any time obtain the aforesaid Freedom of recourse, the same being craved as a Grace in the Congregation-House, and the Oath taken after, before his Admittance. But if any Man presume to intrude himself into that place, without special Permission, before he hath been sworn, except he come accompanied with one that is sworn, and still remain with him in sight, (who is then upon his Oath, to stand as a Pledge for the other's good Behaviour) besides his corporal Imprisonment for one whole Day, he shall according to the nature of such his Presumption, forfeit so much Mony as shall be awarded by the Vice-Chancellor or his Deputy: Of which the one Moity shall goe to the Keeper, (as of all other pecuniary Forfeitures) and the other to the Use and Benefit of the Library. But if it shall happen in time to come, (whereof we are in good hope we shall never see Example) That any Graduat or other, shall be clearly convicted to have dismembred, or secretly purloined and conveyed away any Books, Tract or Tracts, Leaf or Leaves of any Volume in the Library; Or to have made any Change in any Line or Lines, Word or Words, Syllable or Letter, in any Author whatsoever; Or shall have known the like offence committed by some other, and not discovered the same, within Three Days after his Notice of it, he shall be publickly disgraded being a Graduat, in the next Congregation of the Regent Masters, and whether he be a Graduat or otherwise, he shall be excluded out of Hand, from taking any Benefit, not only of the Library, but of any further Study, or Aboad and Continuance in the University. For which the Vice-Chancellor or his Substitute, shall pronounce the Sentence of his Banishment in the open Congregation, and keep a permanent Record, both of the Kind and Quality, of that Delinquent's Perjury, and of the exemplary Punishment inflicted upon it.
And here, although we presuppose, that the Library-Keeper in regard of his liberal Education, his Affection unto Learning, his Credit among Clerks, and his Oath and Duty to the University, will be vigilant and studious in the highest Degree, to preserve a Jewel of such Price, committed to his Trust; Yet because in the Usage of other like Foundations, we have seen many Precedents of notorious Abuses, even in those that by profession, and in the Opinion of the world, have born the Name and Reputation of Men of excellent Integrity, we have therefore provided, as near as we are able by Discourse and Reach of Reason, to meet with all Omissions and retchless Carriages of the Keeper, by selecting to the Number of eight principal Graduats, to be perpetual Overseers and Visitors of the Library: To wit the Vice-Chancellor and Proctors, or their Deputies, the three Doctors of the Chair, and the King's two Readers of the Hebrew and Greek Lectures; and unto these, or to the major Part of these, it shall appertain every Year, the eight of November, (unless it be a Sabbath Day, which Munday following shall supply) it being the Day that was solemnised, with our first free entrance into the Library, to visit and survey the State thereof in every Point; for which every Overseer the Eve before, must be personally cited, by some Beadle sent of purpose, from the Vice-Chancellor or his Deputy, to repair thither early the morning following; where the Doors being shut, that they may not be by others interrupted in their Business, and the Keeper secluded, until he shall be called, after a due perusal of these Statutes and Orders, they shall inquire of his Diligence, In writing the Register of Contributors, and the Alphabetical Tables affixed to the Standerds and Heads of every Desk: In digesting the Authors in their proper Partitions, as the Tables give Direction: In delivering those by hand, that are kept under Locks, and wholly left to his Custody: In speedy bringing in, and present placing of such Books, as shall from time to time be given: In observing his Hours of opening, and shutting, and tarrying in the Library: In excluding all kind of Persons, that are no Freemen of that Place; and In providing for the Books and Buildings, with all the Furniture of the Room, that it may be always freed from Dust and uncleanness: and That it goe not to decay, by Reason of Wind and Rain coming in at the Casements, or otherwise for want of timely Reparations. For in any of these Points, and in many more Particulars pertaining to his Function, whatsoever is omitted, or misgoverned by the Keeper, the Vice-Chancellor or his Deputy, with the Assent and Assistance of the other Overseers, may admonish, reprove, or reform him for it, by putting in Execution, whatsoever is contained in our present Constitutions: unless the quality of his Crime shall deserve Deprivation: Which is evermore a Punishment, to be publickly practised, by the Censure and Sentence of that Convocation, by which he was elected.
Sith besides it is usual, in the best contrived Orders of all Common-Wealths, to see a small Toleration of Abuses at first, although they be but seldom suffered, and that by way of Connivance, to engender soon after an irreparable Mischief, to the total Dissolution of the principal Institution; we do therefore Authorise the fore-elected Overseers, and withal we do request and entreat them very earnestly, to attend without fail this principal Good Work of visiting the Library: Wherein according to the Tenour of the Statutes before, they may not only proceed, to examine by Points, how well the Keeper hath performed the Duties of his Charge, but must direct him besides in his doubtful Proposals, if any Statute be defective, or if any new Accident require a new Proviso, and in every other needful Matter: Whereof their joint Information to the publick Assembly of the Regents and non-Regents, must alwayes procure a speedy-Redress.
They shall, furthermore, in writting set down and appoint (if every one of them agree and condescend thereunto, it being of more Importance, than that it should be overweighed by Plurality of Voices) some Books to be Exchanged for better Editions, and some in like sort to be clean made away, as being wholly superfluous, or of no Estimation: And some others to be bought with Mony contributed, or with that which is in Stock in the Iron Chest; whereof the Sum to be expended, must be carefully limited, thereafter as the Store may conveniently spare it: Which then the present Vice Chancellor is to pay unto the Keeper, who shall always be tied by virtue of his Oath, to bestow the same as soon as may be, and as they shall enjoin him, or (if they leave him to his Liberty) as he himself shall see Occasion; so that all be disbursed to the best Advantage of the Library, and a faithful reckoning yielded of it, in their next Visitation.
And though it be so, as we are perswaded, that Men of choice Degree, and Learning in this University, such as we have selected, to oversee these Affairs, will (without expecting for it any Jot of Reward) of their meer and hearty Zeal to the Publick Benefit of Students, esteem so small a time, as may serve for that Purpose, to be fruitfully bestowed, we do appoint notwithstanding for Honour's Sake, and of a reverent Respect to their Persons and Professions, that at every Visitation, they shall have the same Day for their Dinner or Supper an Allotment of Forty Shillings, to be taken of the Revenue of the Library-Chest, and spent in what Place the vice-Chancellor shall appoint within the University; to whose Care and Provision it shall also belong, to cause certain Gloves to be presented by a Beadle, at the time of their Refection, as Memorials and Tokens of the University's Acceptance of their Service that Day. Among which we do allow seven Pairs of Ten Shillings the Pair, to the five Professors of the King's Lectures, and the two Proctors; with one Pair of five Shillings to the Beadle then serving; besides Forty Shillings in Mony to each of the Proctors, in Consideration of their Custody of their Keys to the Chest; and to the Vice-Chancellor one Pair of Gloves of Twenty Shillings Price, or two Pairs of Ten Shillings the Pair, with Twenty Nobles in Mony in regard of his Cumbers, in receiving and disbursing the Monies of the Library.
Moreover for avoiding Confusion, which will undoubtedly follow the Plurality of Accountants, and for a sound and settled Course, to be constantly continued, first in keeping the Rents and Incomes of the Library; (which are the principal Props, to uphold it for ever in a flourishing Stay) and then in defraying both those afore declared, and all other Charges, as their incident Occasions of either buying, binding, chaining, clasping, or stringing of Books, or the needful repairing of such Decays and Imperfections, as the Ornament and Works of the inward Structure of the Library, may at any time require; It is intended by us, that the Vice-Chancellor alone and no other, (except it be so, that by his own, or by the Visitor's Ordination, the Keeper shall be charged with some special Disbursment) may have to deal with the Imployment, of the annual Rents of the Library: Or of any Parcel of Mony, that may hereafter by any be conferred upon it. For we cannot but presume, that casting what number of noble Benefactors, have already concurred in a Fervor of Affection, to that Publick Place of Study, we shall be sure in time to come, to find some others in some Measure, of the Like Disposition to the Advancement of Learning.
Hereupon we do ordain for our final Conclusion, that the Vice-Chancellor for the time being, within fifteen Days after the Expiration of his Year, and of every Year ensuing, in case he be continued more than one in his Office, shall assemble the Library Visitors, together with the Keeper, to view the Mony remaining in the Iron Chest, and there exhibit in writing a faithful Account, of all his Receipts, Extracts, and Expences that Year: which they are presently to audit, with a diligent Inspection into every Clause and Branch: And therewithal before they part, to return into their Hands his double Keys unto the Chest; Which with his written Account, the Chief Rector of the Chair, or if he should be absent, the Principal there present, shall after deliver to the new Vice-Chancellor in the next Convocation, (which is for that Occasion to be called, when the Doctor shall request it) and there in their Meeting, he shall relate by Word of Mouth, the State of the Chest, and of that Account: and the Account it self in writing, as it was delivered up, shall be presently put into the Chest, or some other Place of Safety. And if it shall appear to the said Convocation, upon the Auditor's Report, or in any other sort, that the Accountant Vice-Chancellor very loosly regarding the Religion of his Oath, or his own Reputation, hath wasted or mispent some deal of Treasure, belonging to the Library, (which for the eminent Dignity of his Person and Place, and for the Abundance of Trust, that we are always to repose in his Wisdom and Willingness, to administer all uprightly, we can never be induced to surmise of his Stewardship) that present Convocation ought to take Cognition of it, and to tax it with Respect, if it be but a Scape, or Oversight of slender Moment: But if it fall out in Proof to be a manifest Enormity, their Authority shall stretch to censure his Offence, according to his Merit: and in all our former Acts, Constitutions, and Decrees, to expound and to alter, to abrogate and innovate, to add or to diminish, and to provide in all Events, for the Indemnity of the Library, as for a Treasure to Students of incomparable worth.