Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle upon Tyne


"The Society was founded early in 1793 as a ‘conversation club’, with an annual subscription of one guinea. The subjects of the conversations - and the books that supported them - were wide-ranging, but religion and politics were prohibited. From its outset, the Society had an enterprising, inquisitive and liberal nature: the first women members were admitted by 1804, various groundbreaking demonstrations of new technology took place, such as George Stephenson’s miners’ safety lamp in 1815. In 1820, The Newcastle upon Tyne Society for the gradual abolition of Slavery in the British Dominions was established at a meeting held in the Society’s rooms. The society’s lecture theatre was the first public room to be lit by electric light, during a lecture by Sir Joseph Swan on October 20th 1880...." (The Lit & Phil)

The Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle upon Tyne (or the Lit & Phil as it is popularly known) is a historical library in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, and the largest independent library outside London. The library is still available for both lending (to members) and as a free reference library.

Founding

Founded in 1793 as a "conversation club" by the Reverend William Turner and others – more than fifty years before the London Library – the annual subscription was originally one guinea. The Lit and Phil library contained works in French, Spanish, German and Latin; its contacts were international, and its members debated a wide range of issues, but religion and politics were prohibited. Women were first admitted to the library in 1804.

In February 2011, actor and comedian Alexander Armstrong became President of the Lit & Phil. He launched their funding appeal at a special gala event.

At the start of 2012, membership of the Library reached 2,000, the highest number since 1952.

History

During the 19th and 20th centuries, the Lit & Phil was host to a long list of the intelligentsia of the era. Engineer and inventor George Stephenson showed his miner's lamp there, and in 1879, when Joseph Swan demonstrated his electric light bulbs, the Lit and Phil building became the first public building to be so illuminated.

The Society received in 1800 the country's first specimens of the wombat and the duck-billed platypus from John Hunter, Governor of New South Wales and honorary member of the Lit and Phil.

Between 1822 and 1825, a new building was created for the Society on Westgate Road, designed by John Green. The building is still in use today, with many original features including iron-work second-floor galleries.

Text from Wikipedia, available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License (accessed: 16/04/2016).
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070584: Literary & Philosophical Society Library (Lit & Phil) Westage Road, Newcastle

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048617:The Literary and Philosophical Society Library, 1987

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048612:The Literary and Philosophical Society Library, 1987

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048609:The Literary and Philosophical Society Library, 1987

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048605:The Literary and Philosophical Society Library, 1987

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002057:Sir John Edward Swinburne Bart. Capheaton Meisenbach Undated

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Joseph Swan (1828 -1914)
- Overview About Joseph Swan Joseph Swan was born in Bishopwearmouth on 31st October 1828. He was a physicist, chemist and inventor. He became a partner in Mawson, Swan and Morgan ...
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SIR JAMES KNOTT ROOM

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Newcastle

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PLAQUE ON THE LIT & PHIL

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THE LIT & PHIL

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RICHARD WELFORD AT THE LIT & PHIL

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PRESIDENTS OF THE LIT & PHIL

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GILLIAN ALLNUTT AT THE LIT & PHIL

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George Stephenson (1781 – 1848)
- Overview Detailed Information George Stephenson was a famous engineer and inventor, considered to be "father of the railways". He was born in Wylam in Northumberland on 9th June 1781. In 1814, Stephenson ...
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Robert Stephenson (1803-1859)
- Overview Detailed Information Robert Stephenson was considered to be one of the greatest engineer of the 19th century. He was born in Willington Quay on 16th October 1803, son to ...
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Thomas Bewick (1753-1828)
- Overview About Thomas Bewick Thomas Bewick (1753-1828). Bewick, the acclaimed wood engraver, artist and naturalist, was born in August 1753 at Cherryburn House, a small farm in the parish of ...
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Lord William Armstrong (1810-1900)
- William George Armstrong was born on 26th November 1810 at Shieldfield in Newcastle.
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John Dobson (1787 - 1865)
- John Dobson was a 19th centaury architect in the North of England. He had a prolific career, designing over 50 churches and 100 houses. He is best known for designing ...
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Richard Grainger (1797–1861)
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Charles, 2nd Earl Grey (1764-1845)
- Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey was descended from a long-established Northumbrian family seated at Howick Hall. Aged just 22 Grey was elected to Parliament for the Northumberland constituency in 1786. ...
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Westgate Road
- Westgate Road takes its name from the West Gate of the Town Walls, one of the main entrances to Newcastle in Medieval times. It is a major road starting in the city ...
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Image taken from page 339 of 'The Local Historian's Table Book of remarkable occurrences, historical facts, traditions, legendary and descriptive ballads, connected with the Counties of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland, and Durham. Historical Division.

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Image taken from page 286 of 'The Local Historian's Table Book of remarkable occurrences, historical facts, traditions, legendary and descriptive ballads, connected with the Counties of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland, and Durham. Historical Division.

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North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers
- Overview About the Institute Notable Members The North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers (NEIMME) was founded in 1852 and its first chairman was Nicholas Wood.  The Mining ...
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Lit & Phil Balcony

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010422:Literary

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002065:Reverend William Turner Newcastle upon Tyne Collard W.

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001959:John Bruce Newcastle upon Tyne Collard W.

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Literary And Philosophical Society Of Newcastle

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