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Thomas James

Thomas James (c. 1573 - August, 1629) was an English librarian, first librarian of the Bodleian Library, Oxford.

He was born at Newport, Isle of Wight, and educated at Winchester and New College, Oxford, where he became a fellow in 1593. In 1602, his wide knowledge of books, together with his skill in deciphering manuscripts and detecting literary forgeries, secured him the post of librarian to the library newly founded by Sir Thomas Bodley at Oxford.

At the same time he was made rector of St Aldate's, Oxford. In 1605 he compiled a classified catalogue of the books in the Bodleian Library, but in 1620 substituted for it an alphabetical catalogue. The arrangement in 1610, whereby the Stationers' Company undertook to supply the Bodleian Library with every book published, was James's suggestion. Ill health compelled him to resign his post in 1620, and he died at Oxford in August 1629.