Yale Law School

Print/PDF this page:

Print Friendly and PDF

Share this page:

Rare Finds—The Anthony Taussig Collection

The Lillian Goldman Law Library and Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library recently acquired the Anthony Taussig Collection of English Legal Manuscripts and Printed Books, an extraordinary collection of materials from the thirteenth through the nineteenth century. The printed book collection will reside at the Lillian Goldman Law Library, and the manuscript collection will reside at the Beinecke Library.

Together, these materials form one of the world’s most extensive collections for the study of the cultural and intellectual history of law in England, with particular strengths in the period from the sixteenth through the nineteenth century, when English legal thought emerged as a key global influence.

The acquisitions build on the Lillian Goldman Law Library’s already extraordinary holdings for William Blackstone, the most comprehensive in the world, with another twenty-three Blackstone titles. They also significantly strengthen holdings in the fields of bankruptcy, commercial law, and law reform. Nineteen of the newly acquired books are the only copies in North American libraries, and nine of those are the only copies in any library worldwide.

The acquisition is the culmination of discussions that the Law Library initiated with collector Anthony Taussig five years ago. The purchase of the printed books was made possible by a generous grant from Yale Law School's Oscar M. Ruebhausen Fund.

“These acquisitions will materially enrich our programs of research and teaching in legal history at Yale Law School,” said John H. Langbein, Sterling Professor of Law and Legal History.

“Anthony Taussig is not only a collector, but an accomplished legal historian,” said Mike Widener, the Law Library’s Rare Book Librarian who first met Taussig fifteen years ago. “As a result, he assembled a collection with superb research value.”