KING, Charles William (1818-1888) writer and collector. Autograph letter signed to Thomas Woolner, 2 sides 8vo, Trinity College Cambridge, March 10 1878, thanking him for an antiquity (description not deciphered) adding “Lately I obtained a good Chinese bronze of Pou-Tai, god of contentment; so that now having Wealth and Contentment ever present with me, what can I wish for more?”.
King was a scholar and graduate of Trinity College, Cambridge, who was elected a fellow in 1842 and ordained deacon in 1845. He resided at Rome and Florence 1845–50 where he studied Italian language and literature, and assembled a fine collection of antique gems. He afterwards expanded his collections of gems buying several important collections, and acquired other antiquities. At Cambridge, King devoted himself to writing books on carved gems, notably his two-volume Antique Gems and Rings (1872) and a Handbook of Engraved Gems (1866; 2nd edn, 1885). He also produced a study of Graeco-Egyptian amulets in The Gnostics and their Remains, Ancient and Medieval (1864; 2nd edn, 1887). His correspondent was Thomas Woolner (1825–1892), sculptor, and a founder member of the Pre-Raphaelite brotherhood.