The books of James Sutherland (1638?-1719), first Regius Keeper of the Royal Botanic Garden, came to the Advocates Library in two batches. The first in 1705, along with his collection of coins, represented his hobby and are mainly on the subject of numismatics. The second in 1707 related to his professional life and represent an excellent collection of early botanical books by some of the most important contemporary and classical authors. The collection consists of over 300 printed volumes, including two incunables, plus two manuscripts. There are many 16th-century books in the collection, which includes scholarly works on botany and physic, herbals, descriptions of local floras, works on gardening, and catalogues of the plants in contemporary physic gardens. There also exists a curiosity, a fine copy of the first Irish translation of the New Testament, printed in Dublin in 1602-03. Most of the volumes can be identified from the Advocates Library ex-libris on the front fly-leaf dated 1705 or 1707, and with the additional note: prius M. Jacobi Sutherland.
The manuscripts are described in the unpublished catalogue of Advocates Manuscripts. --- R.L. Betteridge, The Library of James Sutherland (Edinburgh, 2013).