Julian Roberts

Richard Julian Roberts FSA (18 May 1930 – 20 October 2010) was a British librarian, bibliographer , and scholar. [1]

Roberts was educated at King Edward’s School, Birmingham , and Magdalen College, Oxford , where he started reading Classics , but switched to English in his first year. [1]


In the early 1950s, Roberts began his career at the Lambeth Palace Library in London . In 1958 he was appointed as Assistant to the British Museum , where the British Librarywas then located. In 1961, he became joint secretary of the Bibliographical Society with Sir Francis Francis , [2] a post he held for 20 years.

In 1974, Roberts returned to Oxford to become Keeper of Printed Books in the Bodleian Library of the University of Oxford . He was elected a Fellow of Wolfson College in association with his post, and became a collegial deputy head of the college during 1983-84. At the Bodleian Library, Roberts oversaw the introduction of important collections such as the Dunston Collection in 1981, the Marlborough Vicars Library in 1985, and the Opie Collection of Children’s Literature in 1988. In 1983 he was elected Fellow of the Society of Antiquities in London.

Jointly with Andrew Watson in the early 1970s, Roberts edited John Dee ‘s Library Catalog . John Dee (1527-1608 / 9) was a consultant to Queen Elizabeth I who devoted much of his life to the study of alchemy and divination . [3] [4] They published a new edition in 1990 [5] and continued to provide amendments and corrections. [6] Roberts also contributed to the planning of the New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature , with his colleague Ian Willison. [7] He provided much of the poetry section. [1]

Roberts married Anne Duce and they had two children. While working at Oxford, he lived at the village of Tackley in Oxfordshire , north of Oxford .


  1. ^ Jump up to:a b c Obituary: Julian Roberts , The Times , 17 November 2010.
  2. Jump up^ RJ Roberts,Obituary: Sir Frank Francis KCB: 1901-1988. The Library: Transactions of the Bibliographical Society , s6-XI (2): 150-154, 1989.doi:10.1093 / library / s6-XI.2.150
  3. Jump up^ R. Julian Roberts,Dee, John (1527-1609), Oxford Dictionary of National Biography ,Oxford University Press, September 2004; Online edition, May 2006.
  4. Jump up^ Julian Roberts, ed. (2005). “A John Dee Chronology, 1509-1609” . Renaissance Man: The Reconstructed Libraries of European Scholars: 1450-1700 Series One: The Books and Manuscripts of John Dee, 1527-1608 . Adam Matthew Publications. Archived from the original on 20 July 2008 . Retrieved 27 October 2006 .
  5. Jump up^ Julian Roberts and Andrew G. Watson (editors), John Dee’s Library Catalog (Oxford University Press, 1990). ISBN 978-0-19-721795-5.
  6. Jump up^ Julian Roberts and Andrew G. Watson, John Dee’s Library Catalog: additions and corrections , Bibliographical Society, UK.
  7. Jump up^ Frederick Wilse Bateson (editor), New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature (Cambridge University Press, 1974). ISBN 978-0-521-20004-2.

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