Overdue library book is finally returned... 120 YEARS LATE

Library book fines are a nightmare; if you are even a day late, you are subjected to a fine and when you have barely any money to survive anyway, trying to survive on own brand beans and bread, they can be especially unwelcome.

The Twittersphere is rife with people complaining about late fees:

But imagine how much the fee would be for a book that was 120 years overdue.

Well, imagine no more. Alice Gillett found out how much that would be when she returned a book, borrowed by her grandfather, Professor Arthur Boycott (below) between 1886 and 1894.

It was taken out of the library at Hereford Cathedral School and was discovered by Mrs Gillett when she was going through her 6000-strong book collection after the death of her husband, earlier this year.

The book in question is The Microscope and its Revelations, by Dr William B Carpenter. It was used by Boycott during his studies in Natural Science before he became a distinguished naturalist and pathologist.

Along with the returning book, Mrs Gillett included a note and a copy of her grandfather's obituary. The note read:

"Dear Headmaster,
"I am sorry to inform you that one of your former pupils, Professor A.E Boycott PRS appears to have stolen the enclosed- I can't imagine how the school has managed without it!
Yours, Alice Gillett (granddaughter) and chief book sorter!"

The library has promised to waive any fees, which would amount to approximately £7,446 if the daily rate of 17p is enforced.

There are late fees, then there is this!