Person    | Male  Born 22/1/1571  Died 6/5/1631

Sir Robert Cotton

Antiquarian and politician. Born Robert Bruce Cotton in Denton, Huntingdonshire. He entered parliament in 1601, as the member for Newtown, Isle of Wight. His collection of manuscripts which became the Cottonian Library, was the basis of what became the British Library. It included many priceless items, among which were two original copies of the Magna Carta

From the British Library: Robert Cotton was a landowner, politician and scholar. He made his collection of books and manuscripts – including two original copies of Magna Carta – available for consultation. In 1629 the King {Charles I} ordered the closure of Cotton’s library, which was seen as a threat to royal power, and Cotton was briefly imprisoned. Cotton’s son and grandson expanded the collection, ultimately leaving it to Parliament to ‘be kept and preserved … for Publick Use and Advantage’. UNESCO added the Cotton manuscripts to its Memory of the World UK Register in 2018.

Credit for this entry to: Alan Patient of www.plaquesoflondon.co.uk

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Sir Robert Cotton

Commemorated ati

Sir Robert Cotton

This bust is a 20th-century replica after Louis-François Roubiliac, 1757.

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