The oldest public library in the English-speaking world is Chetham’s in Manchester – founded in 1653. They have featured some of their John Dee collection on their website this week which you can see here.
What a beautiful signature the old wizard had! (click to enlarge)
‘In 1841 the novelist Harrison Ainsworth published the novel Guy Fawkes, or The Gunpowder Treason: An Historical Romance, in which Dee, Fawkes and Humphrey Chetham are described meeting in the warden’s room (now the Library Reading Room). There is no evidence for this encounter but it is possible that the young Humphrey Chetham knew John Dee. Dee borrowed money from Humphrey’s older brother Edmund who was master of the Grammar School from 1597 to 1602.’