In the course of his long life Trelawny wrote numerous accounts of Shelley’s death and cremation, each one more dramatic and less reliable than the last. He did not record finding an edition of Sophocles in Shelley’s jacket pocket until 1858; in an account of 1878, this has turned into an edition of Aeschylus. Both a Sophocles and an Aeschylus may have been found by Trelawny after Shelley’s death but – less dramatically – in the trunk of belongings he had with him on board rather than in his jacket pocket. Although better preserved than the Sophocles, the Aeschylus seems to show signs of water damage such as its buckled binding.
Trelawny recalled giving Shelley’s Aeschylus to Sir Percy Shelley. Perhaps it was the edition here, which has notes in Shelley’s hand. It is inscribed on the flyleaf: ‘Belonged to P.B. Shelley / & was left to me / by his daughter-in-law / Jane, Lady Shelley. / J.C. Shelley-Rolls.
Percy Bysshe Shelley; ? E.J. Trelawny; ? (gift) Sir Percy Shelley; (bequest, 1889) Lady Shelley; (bequest, 1899) John C.E. Shelley (later Sir John Shelley-Rolls); (bequest, 1961) Bodleian.