Thomas Pope Blount 1649-1697
Sir Thomas Pope BLOUNT, 1st bart 1649-1697
Son of Sir Henry Blount (1602-82) (the family's ancestors included Sir Thomas Pope, the founder of Trinity College, Oxford, from whom the Tittenhanger estate descended) entered Lincoln's Inn in 1668 (Sir Henry disapproved of the dissolute culture of universities and educated his children at home). He held various local offices in the 1670s, became MP for St Albans in 1679 and was created a baronet in 1680. Noted as "a cultivated and retiring man" (ODNB), he published his Censura celebriorum authorum in 1690 (a biographical/bibliographical dictionary of authors from classical times onwards), Essays on several subjects in 1691, A natural history in 1693, and De re poetica in 1694.
We do not know the size of contents of any of the Blount family libraries, but it is clear both from the family's literary activities and from testamentary evidence that books were important to them. In his will, Sir Henry left all his books, then in London, to Charles; the Tittenhanger estate (with, presumably, some family library there) had already been settled on Thomas, in 1678.
Sir Thomas, in his will, left all his books to his eldest son. Charles likewise left his books to his eldest son, to be inherited at the age of 30, or when he married (whichever happened first), or (should that son die too soon) to the next in line on the same terms, "hoping that if they have any value for my memory they will never sell or dispose of that study and choice collection which I have with so much charge and trouble gathered together". If all his sons died too young to inherit the books, they were to go to "such of my daughters as shall be married and have the first son then living", or failing that, to the eldest son of his brother Thomas.
None of the Blounts' books have been identified.
- History of Parliament.
- Dick, O. L. (ed), Aubrey's brief lives, 1949, 25-7.
- Pritchard, Jonathan. "Blount, Sir Thomas Pope, first baronet (1649–1697), politician and writer." Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.