19 October, 2019, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

‘Learning Together: Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society’

Leeds City Museum

Booking required - please see below

When the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society (LPLS) was established in 1819, it adopted as its seal – today we would call it a ‘logo’ – a profile image of Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom and sponsor of the arts, sciences and industry, and for 200 years LPLS has been nurturing the minds of Leeds residents with a fascinating programme of talks, publications, collections and social events. During this time, LPLS has been addressed by many eminent men – and latterly women – , including the scientist John Dalton, the naturalist and biologist Alfred Wallace, William Morris, who is best known today for his fabric designs, and the poet Matthew Arnold who, very much in the spirit of LPLS, delivered a lecture in 1884 on ‘Literature and Science’ to the society.


To celebrate our history, a Bicentenary conference will held on Saturday 19th October at Leeds City Museum which will explore diverse themes illustrating the Society’s activities in the 19th century. The conference programme will include lectures on the 18th century Enlightenment origins of philosophical and literary societies in the North of England; the role played by the LPLS in the formation of ‘a civil society’; the establishment of the Society’s Museum and its Curators; finally a talk on a more patriotic note which discusses the ways in which LPLS promoted the British art as opposed to the work of the Old Masters. Like our forebears in 1819, our ambition is to add to ‘the diffusion of knowledge’ and ‘the advancement of learning’ and so we look forward to continuing their important legacy over the next one hundred years.


To download a conference programme please click here


There is no registration fee for this one day conference but in order to reserve your place, please contact Janet Douglas at janetdouglas21@hotmail.co.uk


Tea and coffee will be served but unfortunately we are unable to provide lunch, but the Museum cafe serves a range of food and a number of other eating outlets are close at hand.