Definition of antiquary in English:



  • another term for antiquarian
    • ‘One may cite in this context the by no means exceptional example of the seventeenth-century antiquary Simonds D' Ewes, who had crammed his notebooks with no less than 2,850 Latin and Greek verses by the time he left grammar school!’
    • ‘Norwich in particular is a borough that has been well-served by its antiquaries, and Hudson's work represents the best of antiquarianism.’
    • ‘Napoleon's example of taking antiquaries, etymologists, epigraphists and naturalists with him to Egypt conferred a cultural dimension to post-Napoleonic French colonialism which had not been there before.’
    • ‘Most of the owners of Egyptian material appear to have been inquisitive antiquaries rather than aristocratic virtuosi seeking works of art for their country houses.’
    • ‘None the less, after the Essex rebellion, Elizabeth told the antiquary William Lambarde, with whatever ironic reference, ‘I am Richard II, knowe ye not that?’’
    • ‘Inside the bank was a circle of fifty-six holes (the Aubrey Holes - so-called after the antiquary who discovered them), which probably held upright posts (some marked by concrete discs).’
    • ‘Daniel Wray is the aforementioned antiquary, a fellow of the Royal Society and of the Society of Antiquaries.’
    • ‘He had been an antiquary and collector, who at one time owned the Wilton Diptych, now in the National Gallery, London, and was also one of the people who refounded the Society of Antiquaries of London in 1717.’
    • ‘The list of finds I have made reads like the contents of an antiquary's cabinet - some archaeological, some geological, some merely curious, all with tales to tell.’
    • ‘My dear friend the Barbadian antiquary has given me a thoughtful and useful present.’
    • ‘The antiquary John Aubrey, writing in the seventeenth century, cited a report that Shakespeare ‘had been in his younger years a schoolmaster in the country’.’
    • ‘It was a style seldom used by Soane and the Marquess suggested that he should take advice on the ‘various Gothicks’ from the antiquary John Carter.’
    • ‘In Bradford, Yorkshire the eighteenth-century antiquary John Hartley recounted a Martinmas payment ritual associated with the slaying of a huge, ravenous wild boar and the rival claims of two hunters to having performed the feat.’
    • ‘So perhaps when the old antiquary, William Stukeley, called these monuments ‘cursuses’, he wasn't quite as mistaken as many archaeologists have liked to believe.’
    • ‘Ever since the late sixteenth century, the monuments from Britain's remote past have attracted the attentions of antiquaries, novelists, poets and, later, of historians and archaeologists.’
    • ‘Though Johnson was less of a literary antiquary than some of his contemporaries, he possessed, through his work on the Dictionary, an unsurpassed knowledge of the language of Shakespeare and his contemporaries.’
    • ‘He had been prompted to do so by the existence of at least one ditch around the hill top, which had been recognised some 200 years earlier by the antiquary William Stukeley.’
    • ‘An antiquary by inclination, he chairs the county archaeological society which has an active field group and he acts as archaeological advisor for the diocese.’
    • ‘The antiquary William Camden was the first to divide surnames into the categories broadly represented in all European languages.’
    • ‘The remainder passed into the hands of an antiquary, who also managed to obtain letters by Horrocks from the Crabtree family.’


Mid 16th century: from Latin antiquarius, from antiquus (see antique).