Mapping Asia homepage Mapping Asia splash logo
Project background Search collections Search newspapers Language skills External links Contributors login
Back to results pageQuick collection searchBrowse collection recordsAdvanced collection search

Howley Harrison Collection including the Inglis Collection

Collection Details

Howley Harrison Collection including the Inglis Collection held at Canterbury Cathedral Library [Institution record]

Description of Collection

Content description

The collection is a clerical gentleman's library including Asian material in a collection covering a wide variety of subjects. A number of foreign language texts are included but the majority is in English. The collection spans a date range of batween 1600 and 1900 approximately. The Cathedral Library houses an estimate of 16000 books and pamphlets of which 325 are of an Asian subject content.

History and development

In 1887 Archdeacon Benjamin Harrison's widow gave her husband's collection of sixteen thousand books and pamphlets to the Cathedral. Through his wife, Harrison was connected with Sir Robert Harry Inglis who was MP for the University of Oxford. Harrison married Inglis step-daughter Isabella Thornton and the books were then merged into a vast collection.

Inglis had family connections with the East India Company and as a result amassed a wide range of volumes relating to Asia and covering many subject matters.


We hold some East India Company material that has particular reference to Christian Missionary work. The collection as a whole is available for all to use but is particularly used for research by academics form the University of Kent with which the Cathedral Library is in partnership.

General arrangement and access regulations

The access policy is that the library is of closed access to the general public but the collections are available for use with prior appointment with the Cathedral Librarian.

The physical arrangement of the collection is not in any subject or geographical order but is shelved in the original order that the owner placed them in.

Subjects of the Collection

Regions of Asia

Central Asia and the Caucasus, East Asia, Near & Middle East and North Africa, South Asia, South East Asia.


Afghanistan, China, East Timor, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, South Korea, Syria, Thailand, Turkey.


Anthropology, Economics, Education, Geography, History, International relations, Language, Medicine, Politics and government, Religion, Travel.

Collection Material and Size of Collection

Material Types

Books, Maps (includes all types of cartographic material).

Total size of collection

325 books and pamphlets

Size of collection - vernacular


Size of collection - western


Collection Management Information

The collection is not being actively developed.

Content date range

1600 to 1900 AD

Interlibrary loan procedure

As it is not a lending library it does not operate a system of interlibrary loans. Pre 1900 material may not be photocopied so can not be sent to other institutions. Most post 1900 material can be photocopied. All interlibrary loan requests must go direct to the University of Kent for assessment.

Co-operative agreements

  • In the mid-1970s an agreement was forged between Canterbury Cathedral Library and the University of Kent to help in the finance, management and staffing of the library. Since September 2001 there has also been a joint sharing of the University on-line catalogue.

Collection policy

The library collection policy can be consulted at Canterbury Cathedral Library. It contains the aims of the library, collection outlines and a general mission statement.

Collection Catalogue Information


The on-line catalogue was established in September 2001 and contains entries for all acquisitions. It is part of the University of Kents web catalogue. The pamphlet collection still has a card index which is accessible to the public. There are also printed catalogues of pre 1801 printed books and the Law Society Mendham Collection.

Collection printed catalogues

Catalogue of pre-1801 printed books
David Shaw and Sheila Hingley
Wiltshire: Adam Matthew Publications, 1998

Back to results pageQuick collection searchBrowse collection recordsAdvanced collection search