genealogical information limited solely to the landed aristocracy of Great
Britain. For bibliography, its best features are its reproductions of
coats of arms which often are used in the bookplates of "armigerous"
(arms-bearing) families. Usually found on the front or back pastedown of
the binding, bookplates can provide conclusive proof of ownership even if the
owners never signed their name in the book. Coats of arms are extremely
detailed, and custom dictates that they can never be used by any but a member of
the family to which they belong. The detailed genealogical information
also can help identify persons named in documents when the persons belong to
families which re-use the same given names in multiple generations. In
1837, Burke also published A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the
Commoners of Great Britain and Ireland, Enjoying Territorial Possessions or High
Official Rank; but Uninvested with Heritable Honours 4 Vol. (London: Henry
Colburn). The DNB offers far more detailed
information about the lives of its entries than Burke's, including
details about authorship, and sometimes book-ownership or donation to libraries.
Burke, Bernard, Sir, 1814-1892
Burke's genealogical and heraldic history
of the peerage, baronetage &
knightage, founded 1826 by John Burke and Sir Bernard Burke ..
edited by L. G. Pine ..