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Alexander Henry Wylie diary


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Wylie was one of five children born on June 13, 1810, in Middlesex, England to Henry Wylie and Charlotte Lucy Merry. He became a merchant and lived in Scotland. In 1843 Wylie married Elizabeth Crosbie (1820-1906) and they had seven children.

This marble, paper covered volume with tie closures and a label with a printed border pasted on the cover contains the travel diary of Alexander Henry Wylie. The diary comprises Wylie's descriptions two journeys. The first trip is a tour through Europe spanning four months from February to June in 1832. The second journey records Wylie's voyage to Havana, Cuba with his brother Macleod from December 1832 to January 1833. Wylie's trip through Europe included Spain, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, and Belgium. Wylie noted his impressions of the cities he visited, the accommodations, and the people. A significant portion of Wylie's trip--from March to May-- was spent traveling throughout Italy. Wylie spent Easter week at the Vatican and in Rome where he described holy day blessings by the Pope, including Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, and Easter. Detailed descriptions and impressions of visiting museums, seeing works of art, attending operas, and touring ancient sites throughout Italy are included. Wylie specifically mentions his visit to Palazzo Barberini to see Beatrice Cenci and his admiration for the Colosseum. Wylie was also enamored with Florence visiting the museums daily. He wrote of visiting friends and acquaintances while in Italy including Lady Vavasour among others. Wylie noted his 22nd birthday on June 13, 1832 while Düsseldorf. In addition to his tour through Europe, Wylie wrote of his voyage on the Rosehill to Cuba with his brother Macleod. Wylie chiefly wrote of the weather, sea sickness, the seas, passing Caribbean islands, and reading until his arrival in Havana, Cuba on January 31, 1833. Wylie recorded what he read on board the Rosehill almost daily. Works include the Bible, Childe Harold's pilgrimage (which he confesses he stole), and Beauties of Sterne. A large portion of leaves in the middle of the volume are blank. Reading the volume from back to front Wylie lists the cities he has visited, people he visited, information concerning money in other countries, ships traveled on, and the captains. "The Valencian love song" a poem written in Spanish spans four pages at the end of the volume. Two armorial bookplates depicting stags with Wylie's full name are laid in the volume.

Sold by Ian Brabner, Rare Americana (Wilmington, Delaware), 2016.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Donna Brandolisio
Finding Aid Date
February 2017
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Alexander Henry Wylie diary, 1832-1833.
Volume 1

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