Adam Matthew Digital announces publication of 'Nineteenth Century Literary Society: The John Murray Publishing Archive'

14 April 2020

Published product


Drawn from the holdings of the National Library of Scotland, AM Digital’s latest collection, Nineteenth Century Literary Society: The John Murray Publishing Archive is an unparalleled resource for scholars and academics interested in the history of the book, literature and nineteenth-century history.

From its inception in 1768, the John Murray publishing house worked with influential authors whose famed titles continue to shape literature to this day, including Jane Austen, Sir Walter Scott, Herman Melville and Lord Byron.

 "We're thrilled to publish Nineteenth Century Literary Society. The John Murray publishing house has such a rich history, both in its own right and as an important nineteenth century publisher behind some truly influential literary works - most notably, those of Lord Byron, a poet "mad, bad and dangerous to know". By far one of the most featured writers within Nineteenth Century Literary Society, the Byron Papers make up around 15% of the collection, and historians of his life and work will find a real treasure trove of content here."

Hannah Phillips, Head of Production, Adam Matthew Digital


"I am delighted that by working with Adam Matthew Digital we can share some of the highlights of this fascinating and important archive with researchers all over the world. The John Murray Archive is one of the National Library of Scotland's treasures and making it available through a digital resource offers possibilities for new and interesting research in literary and book history."

Kirsty McHugh, The National Library's John Murray Archive & Publishers' Collections Curator


A particular highlight of Nineteenth Century Literary Society is the Life Cycle of the Book. This new exhibition allows users to trace the development and publication process of a selection of well-known and influential literary works, most notably Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species. From the author’s initial proposal to the final, published first edition, discover the production story of a book that changed the world.

Further collection highlights include correspondence charting the founding of the business by the first John Murray, financial papers recording the sales of hundreds of Murray titles, drafts of David Livingstone’s seminal work Missionary Travels, and annotated proofs of Lord Byron’s works, including Don Juan.

To find out more, or to arrange a free trial, please visit: