Gulston, Joseph

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Joseph Gulston was the son of Joseph Gulston, a successful loan contractor, who married in secret Maria Mericas da Sylva, daughter of a Portuguese merchant. He was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford, where he matriculated 18 February 1763, age 18. On his father's death he found himself in possession of a fortune of £250,000 in the funds, an estate of £1,500 and a house in London. He was elected Member of Parliament for Poole from 1765 1768 and from 1780 1784, and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. He married, 24 June 1767, Elizabeth Bridgitta, second daughter of Sir Thomas Stepney, Baronet, and they had one son also called Joseph. The father collected a massive library which was sold by auction 8 May 1783 by Mr Compton of Conduit Street, in London as `the genuine curious and magnificent library of an eminent collector', though the List of catalogues of English book sales 1676 1900 now in the British Library identifies the same auctioneer's sale of 8 May 1786 as being that of Gulston's library. Both sales were anonymous. The History of Parliament says that the library was sold in June 1784. The ancient and modern music was sold by Mr Greenwood at his rooms in Leicester Square 14 February 1788, the prints and portraits were sold in thirty-eight nights from 16 January to 13 March 1786. Some of his books were bought by George III.

Sale Dates: 
8 May 1786
Seat / Residence(s): 
Ealing Grove House, London
Auction House: 
Mr Compton of Conduit Street, London
Biographical Sources: 
Dictionary of National Biography
Sir Lewis Namier and John Brooke. The history of Parliament. The House of Commons 1754 1790. London, 1964.