A DISCUSSION on the Scottish artefacts amassed by the 19th-century mill-owner and bibliophile William Law (1836-1901) at the Honresfield Library will take place at the National Library of Scotland tomorrow. (Thursday March 30 2023)

And the event will be live streamed for those who can not attend in person.

This library contained an exceptional collection of English and Scottish manuscripts and printed books that had the Brontës at its heart, as well as manuscripts in the hands of Jane Austen, Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott and a significant collection of printed books.

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It has been largely inaccessible for the last 80 years.

In 2022, Friends of the National Libraries saved the literary treasure trove for the nation after more than 100 years in private hands.

This process resulted in Abbotsford securing two of the star items from the Honresfield collection: the only surviving fragment of the manuscript for The Lay of the Last Minstrel, Scott’s first long narrative poem, and the author’s ‘Lighthouse diary’ of 1814.

The well-known poem establishes that potent mix of story, history, minstrelsy and magic that was to become a trademark of Scott’s literature and the diary tells of his time at the Northern Lighthouse Commission.

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Both items are due to be displayed at Abbotsford later this year.

But first you can join the National Library’s Ralph McLean, Kirsty Archer-Thompson from the Abbotsford Trust and Sarah Beattie from the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum as they discuss the Honresfield items that have returned home to Scotland, including manuscripts by Sir Walter Scott and also Robert Burns.

This event will be live-streamed and is free, but booking is essential.  

You can attend in person or watch online as the event will also be live-streamed from the National Library of Scotland.