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The Little Gidding Concordance

Detail from the title page of the Little Gidding Concordance

This grand and enormous book is one of the treasures of the Royal Library.

Created for Charles II when he was Prince of Wales by a religious community called Little Gidding, it is entirely made up of collaged books and prints. It is sumptuously bound in purple velvet and decorated with gold tooling.

Totally unique and one of only a handful of books made by the community, the Little Gidding concordance is both impressive and beautiful to look at, and historically very important.

This research was undertaken by Rebecca Whiteley as part of a curatorial internship in the Royal Library, 2013-14.

Little Gidding community

The Little Gidding Concordances
The community at Little Gidding

The community thrived at Little Gidding between 1625 and the 1640s

The provenance of the Royal Library's Concordance

The Windsor copy is the last, and largest, made by the community

The contents of the Royal Library's Concordance

The Windsor concordance is the most structurally complex

The purpose of the Royal Library's Concordance

The Concordance deals with the relationship of the New Testament to the Old

The illustrations

Religious imagery was a contentious subject


The Concordances are fascinating evidence of the way the community worked