History

Stella Maris was a monthly magazine published from 1913 until 1969.  It was started and edited by Fr Edmund Lester SJ, Superior of Campion House, Osterley, and following his death in 1934 was continued by Fr Clement Tigar SJ, who succeeded him as Superior.  Osterley was a training college for men with late vocations, run by Jesuits for men who went on to many religious orders and dioceses.Stella Maris contained articles on matters of faith and doctrine, and on Catholic history. ...
Next month alumni of Beaumont College will travel to the battlefield of Verdun to commemorate the Beaumont Old Boys who fought and died in the First World War. Beaumont College in Old Windsor, Berkshire, was run by the Society of Jesus from 1861 until its closure in 1967. Over 600 Old Beaumont boys (OBs) are known to have served during the course of the war. The final casualty figure stands at 132 OBs – for a comparatively small school this figure is thought to be among the highest of any...
Stephen Power SJ with brothers at the opening mass of GC36
There were several firsts at the 36th General Congregation of the Society of Jesus last year. It was the first time tablets had been used by the members for electronic voting, making it a ‘paperless’ Congregation. GC36 elected the first Superior General from outside of Europe: Fr Arturo Sosa SJ from Venezuela. It was the first time that a General Congregation had been addressed by a Jesuit Pope. And it was also a first for six Jesuit Brothers, who took part in the General Congregation as ‘...
On 15 April 1755, Dr Johnson published his Dictionary of the English Language. In the previous 150 years over 20 English dictionaries had been published, but these had all had serious shortcomings of organisation or scope which limited their usefulness. Dr Johnson was commissioned to make his dictionary by a group of publishers who needed a definitive authority for English grammar, definition and spelling. There had been a huge expansion of books, newspapers and pamphlets in the Eighteenth...
This Friday, 30th of March 2017, will see the launch of the eagerly anticipated Farm Street: The Story of the Jesuits’ Church in London by Michael Hall, Sheridan Gilley and Maria Perry. The gloriously illustrated volume celebrating 50 years of the Farm Street Parish explores the history of Farm Street Church to 1914, the architecture and furnishings of the Church and its associated buildings, and takes a look at life at Farm Street between the wars. Several of the photographs of Jesuits and...
Praying Monks date unknown
This week these two wooden painted monks, each measuring about seven inches tall, have returned from the City & Guilds of London Arts School. The monk on the left has undergone conservation as a final project in an undergraduate’s degree in Conservation Studies, whilst the other, still showing its red and white patches of wear, is unchanged.The monks are something of a mystery. Their appearance provides the only clues to their history, as on their donation in 1835 by Mr P.G. Blackett, the...
Pelican Shamrock Banner
With the celebration of St Patrick’s Day today, (17th March), our chosen object has an appropriately Irish theme. This processional banner comes from a collection with 7 others, which were used at Stonyhurst on the Feast of Corpus Christi.On that Feast Day, through much of the 19th and 20th centuries, the College would make a procession with the Blessed Sacrament from the Fronts to an altar placed in the gardens to celebrate Mass. Along with a guard-of-honour from the CCF and OTC, many banners...
“Poetry is the mainstay of oral tradition and, over centuries, can communicate the innermost values of diverse cultures … [It is] the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind.” (United Nations’ World Poetry Day website).The British Province of the Society of Jesus can count many poets among its members. In previous ‘From the Archives’ blog posts we have already celebrated the verses written down and often beautifully decorated by philosophy students in the...
Manuscript of Taffy the Welsh Mouse
Having celebrated St David’s Day earlier this week, it seems appropriate that this week’s Object from the Stonyhurst College collection focuses on Wales.  ‘The Mouse Trap’ is a poem written in English and Latin by John Formby, when he was a student at St. Omers in 1729, aged 17. Such poems were written by pupils to be performed on suitable occasions, and it is very likely that The Mouse Trap was declaimed by John Formby on St David’s Day in 1729.It is believed that John Formby is in fact...
This year, on the 2nd of March, over 100 countries across the world will be celebrating World Book Day, and 2017 marks the 20th such annual celebration of authors, illustrators, books and reading, designated by UNESCO.Here at the Jesuits in Britain Archives, it is not purely archival material, which preserves the records of the British Province in the form of unique written documents, that we care for. We also look after a large number of antiquarian books dating to the 16th-17th centuries,...

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