Schuh’s Annotated Bio-Bibliography

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LEIGH, Charles.

(1662 – 1701?)

(Born: Singleton Grange, England, 1662; Died: 1701?) English physician & antiquarian.

Leigh graduated with a B.A. from Oxford in 1683, then in 1689 he received his M.D. from Cambridge. He had a medical practice in London, which he later moved to Manchester. He also had an extensive practice throughout Lancashire. Leigh was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1685, and before that organization he read many papers.

Biographical references: Allibone, Dictionary of English Literature, 1859-71. BBA: I 678, 38-49. DNB: 11, 872-3. Poggendorff: 1, col. 1416. Watt, Bibliotheca Britannica, 1824. WBI.

1. English, 1700.
[Contained within a double rule box:] The | Natual History | Of | Lancashire, Cheshire, | And The | Peak, in Derbyshire: | With An | Account | Of The | British, Phœnician, Armenian, Gr. and Rom. | Antiquities | In Those | Parts. | [rule] | By Charles Leigh, | Doctor of Physick. | [double rule] | Oxford: | Printed for the Author; and to be had at Mr. George West's, | and Mr. Henry Clement's, Booksellers there; Mr. Edward Evet's, | at the Green-Dragon, in St. Paul's Church-yard; and Mr. John | Nicholson, at the King's-Arms, in Little-Britain, London. MDCC.

2°: *2 X-Z2 Aa-Oo2; 239l.; [20], 196, [2], 97 p., [2], 80 (i.e., 88), [4], 81-112, [36] p., frontispiece (shows portrait of the head and shoulders of Charles Leigh within an oval frame), 10 plates. The illustrations consist of twenty-two full-paged engravings, a double-paged map with contemporary coloring, two pages of the arms of the subscribers, and a portrait of the author. Page size: 224 x 346 mm.

Contents: [2 pgs/=π1rv], Title page, verso "Imprimatur | ..."; [4 pgs/=A1r-A2v], Dedication to James Duke of Ormund.; [4 pgs/=a1r-a2v], Dedication to William Duke of Devonshire.; [2 pgs/=[a]1rv], "The | Epistle | To The | Candid Reader."-signed Charles Leigh.; [8 pgs/=b1r-c2v], "The | Preface."; [2 pgs/=χ1rv], Dedicatory poem to C. Leigh, signed R.J.; [4 pgs/=χ2r-χ3v], Subscriber's list.; [1 pg/=χ4r], "Advertisement."; [1 pg/=χ4v], Blank.; [2 plates showing the coat-of-arms of each subscriber].; [one folding double-page colored map titled, "A New Map of Lancashire, Cheshire & Derby."]. 1-164 (B1r-Tt2v), Text of the first book.; [1 pg/=χ1r], "Errata in the First Book."; [1 pg/=χ1v], Blank.; [Plate 1: Undulating sound].; [1 pg/=χ1r], "An Explanation of Mr. Burgher's first Plate."; [1 pg/=χ1v], Blank.; [Plate 2: Barometers].; [4 pgs/=***1r-***2v], "An Explanation of the Cuts contain'd in the | Second Plate."; [1 pg/=χ1r], Blank.; [Plate 3: Fossil shells in matrix].; [3 pgs/=χ1v-χ2v], "An Explication of the Cuts contain'd in the Plate | marked Fig. I."; [Plate 4: Shells, bivalves, fossil shells].; [2 pgs/=χ3rv], "An explication ... marked Fig. 2."; [Plate 5: Fossil shells and stones].; [2 pgs/=Aa1rv], "An explication ... Fig. 3."; [Plate 6: Canoe, axe heads, arrow tips].; 181-182 (Aaa2rv), "An explication ... Fig. 4."; 183-184 (Bbb1rv), "The Head of a oung Hippopotamous."; [Plate "5": Skull with antlers attached].; [Plate 6: Various fish and a seal].; 185-186 (Bbb2rv), "Explication of Fig. 6."; [Plate "6": Interior of a large cave].; 187-191, "Explication of Fig. 6."; [Plate 7: Devil's arse].; 192-194, "Explication of Fig. 7."; [Plate 8: Table of birds].; 195-196, Description of the birds plate.; [2 pgs], "The Author's Vindication of himself, ..."; [1]-97 (A1r-Bb1r), "... Book II."; [1 pg/=Bb1v], Blank.; [1 pg/=Bb2r], "Errata."; [1 pg/=Bb2v], Blank.; [Plate Tab II: Trees and equipment].; 1-80 (A1r-V2v), "... Book III."; [1 pg/=χ1r], "Postscript."; [1 pg/=χ1v], Blank.; [1 pg/=χ2r], "Errata in the Third Book."; [1 pg/=χ2v], Blank.; 81-112 (X1r-Ee2v), Plates labeled "Tab I" to "Tab X" intersperced with descriptive text. These all show various artifacts and antiquities, especially ancient coins.; [35 pgs/=Ff1r-Oo2r], "The | Index."; [1 pg/=Oo2v], Blank.

Very scarce. Leigh, remembered primarily as a naturalist and a Fellow of the Royal Society, was a physician by profession. He published serveral works, “the most important of which is a ‘Natural History of Lancashire, Cheshire, and the Peak of Derbyshire" (Thomas).

The text of this volume is most intriguing: it is a catalogue of antiquities, an archaeological survey, and, excuse the modern parlance, a freak show, all in one. One of the author's many goals is to demonstrate and prove, by producing artifacts and animals from far-flung corners of the world, that a huge flood covered the whole earth and dislodged hippos from the home lands, and planted them in the mud of Lancashire. In addition to the text, one is treated to illustrations of such rare and wonderous objects as the ‘The devil's arse' and a woman with horns, among others.

Bibliographical references: LKG: XIV 410. Madan, Oxford Books, 1895-1931.