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James, Thomas

JAMES, THOMAS (c. 1573-1629), English librarian, was born at Newport, Isle of Wight. He was educated at Winchester and New College, Oxford, and became a fellow of New College in 1593. His wide knowledge of books, together with his skill in deciphering manuscripts and detecting literary forgeries, secured him in 1602 the post of librarian to the library founded in that year by Sir Thomas Bodley at Oxford. At the same time he was made rector of St Aldate's, Oxford. In 1605 he compiled a classified catalogue of the books in the Bodleian Library, but in 1620 substituted for it an alphabetical catalogue. The arrangement in 1610, whereby the Stationers' Company undertook to supply the Bodleian Library with every book published, was James's suggestion. Ill health compelled him to resign his post in 1620, and he died at Oxford in August 1629.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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