Discover Elizabeth Legh's passion for music and in particular Handel’s music.

Elizabeth Legh (1694-1734) was the first collector of Handel’s music. From 1715 she spent much of her time at her parents’ London home in Hanover Square, near to Handel’s house in Brook Street, and in her early 20s openly expressed her great joy in response to his music. Legh was herself a skilled harpsichord player and she often acquired a copy of Handel’s works as soon as they was composed.

Growing-up in the family home Adlington Hall, Cheshire, Legh was well-educated and would have experienced the family’s longstanding interest in music, as part of her comfortable upbringing. It is likely that her unmarried status and inherited wealth granted her the freedom to pursue her interest in music and her passion for collecting. Her draft will shows that she owned music books and musical instruments.

This display is a rare opportunity to see items from her unique collection.

Image: Elizabeth Legh’s Will (detail), reproduced with the permission of Cheshire Archives & Local Studies

Free with admission.