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RichardB

"Who was Nevill Simmons ?"

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... and for that matter, who first asked the question "Who was Nevill Simmons ?"

Any details of Nevill Simmons anyone ? I have some (to be posted later) but I'll open the question up to everyone first; surprised I could not find reference to him elsewhere on the Site.

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Would that be the Market St Simmons by any chance? Leader gives the answer.

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Would that be the Market St Simmons by any chance? Leader gives the answer.

Sounds good, we need more, much more detail. Trade, dates, locations, a list of 18 (minimum) things that he did in the course of his trade, shoesize (joking) etc etc

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... and for that matter, who first asked the question "Who was Nevill Simmons ?"

Any details of Nevill Simmons anyone ? I have some (to be posted later) but I'll open the question up to everyone first; surprised I could not find reference to him elsewhere on the Site.

According to this site i have located was he the first Sheffield Bookseller ?

http://www.archive.org/details/bibliographyofsh00freeuoft

A bibliography of Sheffield and vicinity (1911)

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According to this site i have located was he the first Sheffield Bookseller ?

http://www.archive.org/details/bibliographyofsh00freeuoft

A bibliography of Sheffield and vicinity (1911)

Well found Syrup, excellent work !

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According to this site i have located was he the first Sheffield Bookseller ?

http://www.archive.org/details/bibliographyofsh00freeuoft

A bibliography of Sheffield and vicinity (1911)

You'd have to read the book to answer the first part of the question ...

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... and for that matter, who first asked the question "Who was Nevill Simmons ?"

Any details of Nevill Simmons anyone ? I have some (to be posted later) but I'll open the question up to everyone first; surprised I could not find reference to him elsewhere on the Site.

Excerpts from the book should cover most of the questions.

SIMMONS, NEVILL (Publisher and Bookseller, of Sheffield).

B. [16..]

D. 21 July, 1735.

The question was asked in " N. & Q." about fifty years ago by a Sheffield

gentleman, Mr. Henry Jackson, surgeon " Who was Nevill Simmons ? "

He was the first bookseller and publisher of whom we have any trace in

Sheffield. The Cutlers' Company's Accounts show dealings with one or two

earlier names, but they have not come down to us on publications like the

name of Nevill Simmons, and ought not to be taken seriously into account.

The late Rev. Giles Hester's pamphlet, "Nevill Simmons, Bookseller and

Publisher," . . . (Sheffield, 1893), was very helpful and interesting at the time

it appeared. He said, " We catch the first glimpse of [the Sheffield] Nevill

Simmons in 1692," . . . and ..." There is reason to believe Nevill Simmons

came to Sheffield in 1692."

This at least is a sign of relationship between Nevill Simmons (IV.) and

Thomas Simmons (III.) How close was it ? I can quite imagine they were

brothers, and that Nevill Simmons (IV.), whose imprints at " the Three Golden

Cocks " cease in 1681, now made way for B. Simmons, who came on the scene

in 1681, " at the Three Golden Cocks," and continued up to 1684. There is

every probability that Nevill Simmons (IV.) left London about this time and

settled in Sheffield and married, as we have seen, in 1687.

We sadly need proof of the actual relationship of these persons. I venture

to think, however, with a careful consideration of the dates, &c., it is only a

matter of time for some one in a fortunate moment to clear the matter up and

show the connection between the various members of this family and thus

answer the question exactly, " Who was Nevill Simmons ? "

To resume the account of Nevil Simmons (V.) in Sheffield. His book shop

was in the Market Place, and next to that of his Father-in-law, Thomas Bretland,

between the bottom of High Street and the narrow passage leading to Hartshead.

The identical place was a book shop and post office, &c., occupied by Nevill

Simmons and his sons, Nevill and Samuel, for just over one hundred years.

Nevil Simmons had nine children. His wife, Ruth, died in 1707, and a brass

plate is found on the floor just within the chancel door of the Parish Church,

Sheffield, bearing the following inscription :

" Here lyeth the body of Ruth late wife of Nevill Simmons interred ye 25th of

December 1707, aged 41. She left 4 sons and five daughters. Nevill their 2d son

died June ye 11, 1730, Aged 37. Elizabeth their third Daughter died May the i5th

I 75S aged 56 years."

The imprints we give in this volume of Nevil Simmons in Sheffield are reliable

evidences, with the exception of the last one in 1724, which may possibly be

attributed to his son Nevil Simmons (VI.), of Sheffield.

Nevil Simmons (V.), whom we will now call " Father " Simmons, as he

appears in a certain Diary, was now getting on into years, and it is possible by

about the end of 1722 he had relinquished the business in Sheffield to his second

son, Nevil.

Meanwhile the death of Nevil Simmons, Junior (or VI. of our Summary),

of Sheffield, took place as stated, on June nth, 1730, at the early age of 37.

He was buried on the I3th, and in the Register is described as " Bookseller."

During all this time and up to 1735 we have no trace of " Father " Nevil

Simmons, but the end is near. He is evidently living with his son-in-law,

presumably in Nicholas Lane, London, and has now become an old man. We

read in the Diary ; " Father Simmons was Suddenly removed from us July 21,

[1735], being found dead in his Bed in te [sic] Posture He usually slept with his

Head upon his hand. There seem'd to have been no Struggles of dissolving

Nature, but as with inoffensiveness he lived so without uneasiness He dyed.

He is gone to Rest."

Now arises a question we should like to see settled. Where was " Father "

Nevil Simmons buried ?

We read he was buried at Sheffield Parish Church. [burgery of Sheffield,

1901]. The Register, however, has been searched in vain and so has that of

Wakefield. Neither is there any Will found at York. It is almost a certainty

the burial took place in London or the neighbourhood, and having already

searched also in a few directions there without avail, the question still awaits

better fortune.

Any book or pamphlet bearing the imprint of Nevill Simmons Bookseller

in Sheffield is a rarity and a much desired item. I imagine the list here given is

almost exhaustive, however, if the supposition given earlier [see BAXTER,

Richard] has any basis, there may be about 18 other items to be added.

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Excellent work Syrup, Thanks for taking the time and effort to locate that.

Cheers

BigEars.

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