Catalogue of the Papers of Frederick Louis MacNeice

Bodleian Library, University of Oxford

Svenja Kunze, based on lists by Judith Priestman
2018


Catalogued with the generous support of private donors.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
A   Correspondence 1928-1963; n.d.
    A.1   Personal and general correspondence 1928-1963; n.d.
    A.2   Professional correspondence / 'BBC Files' 1950-1963; n.d.
B   Literary papers 1923-1989; n.d.
    B.1   Poems 1929-1963; 1975; n.d.
    B.2   Prose/ non-fiction 1923; c.1930-1967; n.d.
    B.3   Plays, performances and recitals c.1935-1973
    B.4   Translations, lectures and student notes c.1926-1963; n.d.
    B.5   Broadcast scripts and related papers 1941-1975; n.d.
    B.6   Notes c.1927-1964; n.d.
    B.7   Papers about MacNeice and his work c.1935-1989; n.d.
    B.8   (Literary) papers not by MacNeice 1963-1979; n.d.
C   Diaries, personal papers and miscellaneous 1917-1963; n.d.
D   Papers of Hedli MacNeice 1931-1989; n.d.


Papers of Frederick Louis MacNeice

1917-1989; n.d.

Abstract:
Papers of the poet and playwright Frederick Louis MacNeice (1907-1963), with papers of Hedli MacNeice, née Anderson (1907-1990)

Extent: 10.17 Linear metres, 76 physical shelfmarks
Language(s) of Material: English, with occasional use of Latin, Ancient Greek, Modern Greek, French, German.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/1-75; Library Objects JL 954

Biographical/Historical

Frederick Louis MacNeice was born in Belfast on 12 September 1907, the youngest of three children of John Frederick MacNeice (1866–1942), then rector of Holy Trinity, Belfast, and his wife, Elizabeth Margaret (‘Lilly’)(1866–1914), daughter of Martin Clesham, of Co. Galway. In 1908, the MacNeice family moved to Carrickfergus, where Louis MacNeice's father was rector from 1908 to 1931. In those early years his mother was often ill, his father preoccupied and remote. The death of their mother in 1914 was a severe blow for the MacNeice children, who were looked after by a cook and a governess until 1917, when their father brought home a new wife, Georgina Beatrice Greer.

When MacNeice was ten, he was sent to Sherborne preparatory school, and in autumn 1921 he went with an entrance scholarship to Marlborough College. There, John Betjeman, Bernard Spencer, John Hilton, Graham Shepard, and Anthony Blunt were among his contemporaries, and MacNeice wrote a great deal of verse, maturing rapidly and precociously in an aesthetic and intellectual ambience. In 1926 he won a postmastership to Merton College, Oxford. He continued to write - chiefly poems and stories of satire and fantasy - and in time became friendly with other poets, notably W. H. Auden, Stephen Spender, and Clere Parsons. During his time at Oxford, he edited Oxford Poetry with Stephen Spender, and published his first book of poems, Blind Fireworks (1929). In 1930, MacNeice graduated with a ‘First’ in literae humaniores, and having just obtained a lectureship in classics at the University of Birmingham, he married Giovanna Marie Thérèse Babette (‘Mary’) Ezra (1908–1991), daughter of David Ezra and stepdaughter of John Beazley, on 21 June.

During his years in Birmingham, MacNeice continued to write, including the novel Roundabout Way (1932) under the pseudonym Louis Malone, contributions to New Verse and other periodicals, and a second volume of Poems (1935). He became a lasting friend of the head of his department, Professor E.R. Dodds (1893-1979), his lifelong mentor who became professor of Greek at Oxford, and who encouraged him to work on a translation of Aeschylus's Agamemnon (1936). In May 1934, son Daniel John had been born, but the MacNeices’ relationship was struggling, and in November 1935, Mary left her husband for the Russian-American student Charles Katzman. In 1936, MacNeice travelled to Spain with Anthony Blunt, and to Iceland with W.H. Auden, a journey about which they subsequently wrote Letters from Iceland (1937). It was through Auden that he met Nancy Culliford Sharp (1909-2001), then the wife of the painter William Coldstream, who later married Michael Spender. They were instantly attracted, and in 1937 began a passionate affair.

From autumn 1936, MacNeice was lecturer in Greek at Bedford College, London. He discharged his university duties punctiliously, although living the literary life: The Group Theatre produced his Agamemnon in 1936, and Out of the Picture in 1937. In 1938 he published another book of poems, The Earth Compels; two prose works written to commission, I Crossed the Minch, and Zoo (both with illustrations by Nancy Sharp); and a critical book, Modern Poetry. In August 1938 also began a long poem which it took him the rest of the year to finish: Autumn Journal (1939), regarded by many as his masterpiece.

Most of the year 1940, MacNeice spent in the USA, lecturing at Cornell University and trying to figure out whether he could make a life with the American writer Eleanor Clark (1913-1996) whom he had met in New York on a visit to the US the year before. Upon his return to the UK in November 1940, he was rejected for active service because of bad eyesight, and in May 1941 joined the BBC features department, which had a covert propaganda brief from the government. There, under Laurence Gilliam, MacNeice applied his mind to the principles and techniques of his new medium and to exploiting it to creative ends. His mastery was apparent in such programmes as the series The Stones Cry out, Alexander Nevsky, and Christopher Columbus. He adapted his old love of the stage to radio drama, and produced at least two memorable contributions: He had a Date (1944), an elegy for his friend Graham Shepard (1907–1943) who had been killed on convoy duty; and The Dark Tower (1946), a synthesis of two favourite themes, the morality quest and the parable. During the war years MacNeice also produced three more books of poetry, The Last Ditch (1940), Plant and Phantom (1941), and Springboard (1944), and another critical work, The Poetry of W. B. Yeats (1941).

On 1 July 1942 he made a fresh start in family life by marrying Antoinette Millicent Hedley (‘Hedli') Anderson (1907–1990), and in 1943 his daughter Corinna was born.

The features department provided MacNeice with security and employment which he found useful, satisfying, and compatible with his vocation as poet. It was natural to continue in this work after the war, more especially as Gilliam had recruited other stimulating colleagues, many of them also poets—W. R. Rodgers, Rayner Heppenstall, Terence Tiller, and, on occasion, Dylan Thomas. In 1949, to mark the Goethe bicentenary, the BBC produced MacNeice's version of Faust—a major undertaking on which he worked in collaboration with his old friend Ernest Stahl. He had published another collection of poems, Holes in the Sky (1948), and the following year Collected Poems, 1925–1948.

From January to September 1950 MacNeice was on leave from the BBC as director of the British Institute in Athens, and he stayed on until the following March as assistant representative of the British Council, which had merged with the British Institute. Again, he led the double life: conscientious in discharging his duties, while writing the poems published in 1952 as Ten Burnt Offerings. Back in London he began Autumn Sequel (1954), a complement to and reprise of Autumn Journal. He published no more until Visitations in 1957 - the year in which he received an honorary doctorate from the Queen's University, Belfast. In 1958 he was appointed CBE.

During the late 1940s and 1950s, MacNeice travelled extensively, on lecture and recital tours (USA in 1953 and again in 1954, jointly with wife Hedli), as well as on assignments for the BBC: India and Pakistan (in 1947 and again in 1955), to Egypt and Sudan (1955), to the Gold Coast/Ghana (1956), and to South Africa (1959).

In 1960 he and second wife Hedli separated. Louis MacNeice set up house with the actress Mary Wimbush (1924–2005), and in 1961 gave up full-time employment in the BBC to be freer for his own work. He felt himself to be in a fresh creative phase of which Solstices (1961) was the first harvest; he wrote the radio plays The Administrator (1961) and The Mad Islands (1962), and in the first half of the year 1963 he delivered the Clark lectures (published as Varieties of Parable in 1965). In August 1963, Louis MacNeice went caving in Yorkshire to gather sound effects for his radio play Persons from Porlock. He got caught in a storm on the moors, but did not change out of his wet clothes until he was home in Hertfordshire. Bronchitis evolved into viral pneumonia, with which he was admitted to St Leonard’s Hospital in London on 27 August. He died there six days later, on 3 September 1963. After a funeral in London on 7 September, his ashes were interred in Carrodore Churchyard, Ireland.

Before his death MacNeice had been assembling the poems for The Burning Perch (1963), which was published on 13 September 1963. Amongst other works published posthumously were a book on Astrology commissioned by Aldous Books (1964), Selected Poems (1964) edited by W.H. Auden, the autobiography The Strings are False (1965) edited by MacNeice’s friend and literary executor E.R. Dodds, as well as (radio) plays The Mad Islands and The Administrator (1964), One for the Grave (1968), Persons from Porlock (1969), and the song cycle The Revenant, originally written in 1942 for Hedli MacNeice.

Based on: MacNeice, (Frederick) Louis (1907–1963), M. Davin revised by Jon Stallworthy, in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 2009. [DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/34808]

Scope and Content

The archive comprises literary papers and other material relating to Louis MacNeice's career as a writer (1923-1963, and posthumous material), as well as personal and professional correspondence and some personal papers, 1917-1963. It also includes selected papers of his second wife Antoinette Millicent Hedley ('Hedli') MacNeice, 1931-1989.

Arrangement

The arrangement in four main sequences (correspondence; literary papers; personal papers and miscellaneous; papers of Hedli MacNeice) was introduced to the archive when it was partially sorted after it was purchased by the Bodleian Library in 1997. Within these series, material was sorted and re-arranged in 2018, to form coherent chronological, alphabetical or thematic sub-sequences and units.

Restrictions on Access

Material of a sensitive personal nature is closed. Restrictions are indicated in the catalogue as (= Closed).

Acquisition

The papers were originally deposited on loan to the Bodleian Library for the use of MacNeice’s biographer Jon Stallworthy. They arrived in eight batches between 1983 and 1996, and were purchased by the Library in 1997. MS. Res. c. shelfmarks were assigned to each deposit. Subsequently the papers were partially re-sorted and the collection was allocated new, consecutive Res. c. shelfmarks (MSS. Res. c. 1549-1617). In 1995, some papers, including Louis MacNeice's letters to his parents, 1917-1930, and other family papers, were withdrawn by the depositors. Most of this material was subsequently acquired by the University of Texas at Austin, where it can now be found at the Harry Ransom Centre, as Acquisition 13-11-002-P (2013).

Preferred Form of Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Library [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 10641/1].

Related Material

At the Bodleian Libraries:

At the University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Center:

Personal name(s) (NCA Rules)

Dodds | Eric Robertson | 1893-1979 | classical scholar
MacNeice | Antoinette Millicent Hedley ('Hedli') | 1907-1990 | nee Anderson | singer and actress
MacNeice | Frederick Louis | 1907-1963 | poet and playwright

Subject(s)

20th century
English literature -- 20th century
English poetry -- 20th century
Radio broadcasting -- Great Britain

A   Correspondence 1928-1963; n.d.

Scope and Content

Personal, general and professional correspondence mainly from 1928/1929 to 1963, comprising letters, postcards and telegrams sent to Louis MacNeice, and some carbon copies of outgoing (professional) correspondence. The ‘BBC files’ in particular also include internal memos and other papers relating to (radio) programmes.

Arrangement

The correspondence is arranged in two sequences: Personal and general correspondence, 1928-1963, predominantly sent to MacNeice’s home address and arranged by date; and professional correspondence, which mainly comprises original ‘BBC files’, i.e. correspondence and other papers addressed to, and kept by, Louis MacNeice at work at the British Broadcasting Corporation, 1951-1963. The distinction between personal and professional correspondence is not always clear - letters filed under personal and general correspondence may concern business matters, whilst the BBC files may include personal letters, or correspondence relating to professional matters outside the work for the BBC.

The original arrangement of the BBC files has been kept, and original file titles have been noted in the catalogue, e.g. 'Louis MacNeice. Letters from Artists from May 1955- BBC'.


A.1   Personal and general correspondence 1928-1963; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/1-7

Correspondence
Date: 1928-1933; 1936
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/1
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence
Date: c.1935-1936
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/2
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Predominantly personal correspondence, c.1935-1936. Correspondents include Mary MacNeice, John Frederick MacNeice, Maire Beazley (including some forwarded letters), Littleton Powys, John [?Hilton], Bryan Guinness, Humphrey [Thackrah], 'Desmond', E.R. Dodds and A.E. Dodds.

Correspondence
Date: c.1937-1940
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/3
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence
Date: 1940
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/4
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence mainly addressed to MacNeice in the USA (Jan-Oct 1940):

Correspondence
Date: 1941-1949
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/5
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence
Date: 1950-1959
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/6
Language(s) of Material: English, Greek, modern
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence
Date: 1960-1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/7
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

A.2   Professional correspondence / 'BBC Files' 1950-1963; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/8-18

Greece 1950-1951; Visits to the United States 1953 and 1954
Date: 1950-1955
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/8
Language(s) of Material: English, Greek, modern; French
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to MacNeice's stay in Greece, 1950-1951, and to his visits to the United States of America in the 1950s, including contents of the original files titled 'American visit February 1953 + Commissions arising out of visit' and 'Louis MacNeice, American Visit (2) Fall of 1954':

Dylan Thomas Memorial Fund
Date: c.1952-1963; n.d
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/9
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers from folder labelled 'The Dylan Thomas Memorial Fund - Correspondence & Papers', and other papers relating to Dylan Thomas:

[BBC] correspondence files
Date: 1951-1957 mainly 1951-1953
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/10
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence from original file 'Permissions re poems & publishers re books', regarding publishing projects, rights and royalties, and the use of poems and radio scripts for publication, broadcast, performance or translation, mainly 1951-1954:

BBC programme files
Date: 1951-1954
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/11
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (11 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence and other papers, mainly relating to programmes planning and content, including original BBC files 'Programme Correspondence Mr MacNeice from Jan. 1952', c.1951-1954; 'Greek programme file', c.1951-1952; 'Mr MacNeice. Programmes Suggested, Passed on or Rejected', c.1952-1954;' Engagements Social + Business Pert. to Societies, Publishers, Authors, Poets etc (Not Lectures)' , c.1951-1953.

[BBC] correspondence files
Date: 1954-1961
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/12
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence from original files:

BBC correspondence files
Date: 1955-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/13
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence from original BBC file 'Louis MacNeice. Letters from Artists from May 1955- BBC', mainly containing enquiries by actors about parts available in BBC radio programmes and about auditions, with some notes by MacNeice:

BBC memos and letters
Date: 1954-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/14
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Original BBC file 'Louis MacNeice Internal memos re Programme suggestions from May 1955- ', 1955-1963. Also includes papers relating to a programme 'The Pin is Out', 1959-1960.

BBC correspondence files
Date: c.1959-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/15
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence from BBC file 'Accounts':

BBC correspondence files
Date: Jan 1959-Jan 1962
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/16
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence from BBC files 'Louis MacNeice. From Jan. 1959 to Jan. 1962', mainly with publishers, editors, producers, writers, readers/listeners, academics, clubs and societies etc., regarding MacNeice's poems, radio plays, translations, reviews, lectures, recitals, permissions etc.:

Also some includes TSS. and galley proofs of book reviews by MacNeice, some with MSS. comments and corrections.

BBC programme files
Date: 1959-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/17
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Correspondence and other papers, mainly relating to programmes planning and content, including original BBC files 'Louis MacNeice Billings and Programmes-as-Recorded & Programmes-as-Broadcast January 1959- BBC', c.1959-1961, and 'BBC Third Programme Poetry Committee', c.1960-1963; programme on modern war and the arts, 1961-1962; miscellaneous BBC programmes, including 'People Today, 'Latin Poetry', 'The Golden Key', 'Persons from Porlock', 1963.

[BBC] correspondence files
Date: 1961-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/18
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Professional correspondence of the 1960s, including:

B   Literary papers 1923-1989; n.d.

Scope and Content

Notes, drafts, MSS. and TSS. versions, proof copies and other papers, relating to Louis MacNeice’s published work, as well as to unpublished literary works, and to his academic career and to scripts for BBC (radio) programmes. Also includes papers about MacNeice and his work, such as biographical notes and articles, and (literary) papers of others, notably of E.R. Dodds, which were acquired with the MacNeice material.

Arrangement

The papers in the literary papers series were re-sorted to unite material relating to the same publication (e.g. MSS. and TSS., various versions, corrections) or belonging to the same type of material (e.g. translations). For ease of access, the papers are now arranged in sub-series by genre/type of material.


B.1   Poems 1929-1963; 1975; n.d.

MSS. 10641/19-21

Poems 1920s-1930s
Date: 1929-1936
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/19
Language(s) of Material: English, Greek, Ancient
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

MSS. and TSS. of, and papers relating to, Louis MacNeice's 1920s and 1930s poems:

Poems 1940s-1950s, including Song Cycle, Holes in the Sky and Visitations
Date: 1941-c.1958; 1975
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/20
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

TSS. and MSS. versions of, and papers relating to, MacNeice's 1940s and 1950s poems:

Poems 1960s, including Solstices and The Burning Perch
Date: 1961-1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/21
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

TSS. and MSS. version of,, and papers relating to, MacNeice's 1940s and 1950s poems:

B.2   Prose/ non-fiction 1923; c.1930-1967; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/22-31

Articles and essays
Date: 1923; 1940-1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/22
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Articles, essays and other prose texts by MacNeice:

Literary criticism and reviews
Date: 1936-1938; 1952-1954; 1961; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/23
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Reviews by MacNeice of books, plays, poems etc.:

Varieties of Parable
Date: 1963-1965
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/24
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Material relating to the Clark Lectures, 1963, and to their publication as Varieties of Parable, comprising:

The Strings are False and other autobiographical writings
Date: c.1938-1949; late 1950s
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/25
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Comprises:

The Strings Are False
Date: c.1965-1967
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/26
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to the posthumous publication of MacNeice's autobiography The Strings are False:

Astrology
Date: c.1961-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/27
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Notes and rough drafts for a book on Astrology, correspondence with A.F. Walker and E. Howe, and research material and bibliographical notes, c.1961-1963.

Astrology
Date: c.1961-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/28
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Manuscript drafts for book on Astrology, including introduction, chapters 1-7, 'An Astrologer's Tutor', notes on signs of the zodiac, general notes and lists, corrections, n.d. [1961-1963].

Astrology
Date: c.1961-1964
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/29
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Typescripts of Astrology and related papers, including:

Latin Humours
Date: c.1930-1933
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/30
Language(s) of Material: English, Latin; Greek, Ancient
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Two notebooks 'Notes on Humour (Latin etc)' and 'Roman Humours rough draft of chap.i' [title in E.R. Dodds' hand], n.d. [early 1930s].

Latin Humours
Date: c.1933-1934; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/31
Language(s) of Material: German, Latin
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Notes, MSS. and TSS. for an unpublished book on Latin humour, c.1933-1934. Includes [draft of] a lecture, 'Humour in Latin Literature', n.d. [early 1930s].

B.3   Plays, performances and recitals c.1935-1973

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/32-35

Station Bell
Date: [c.1935/1936]; 1966; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/32
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Photocopies of [c. 1935/1936] MS. and incomplete TS. of the play Station Bell, with related correspondence between the library of the University of Texas and E.R. Dodds, 1966.

Related Material

The originals are in the Louis MacNeice Collection at the The Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin, containers 13.12-13.14.


One for the Grave
Date: c.1958; 1965-1966; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/33
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

TSS. of, and papers relating to, the play One for the Grave:

Other plays and performances
Date: 1939-1959
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/34
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (4 folders)

Scope and Content

TSS. of, and papers relating to, other plays and performance pieces:

Further material relating to 'The Cruel Wars' is with the papers of Hedli MacNeice (MS. 10641/72); programmes, publicity material etc. relating to Hedli MacNeice's and Louis MacNeice's joint US recital tours 1953 and 1954 are in MS. 10641/8.

Papers relating to (posthumous) recitals
Date: 1965; 1973; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/35
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to (posthumous) recitals of Louis MacNeice's poems and writings:

B.4   Translations, lectures and student notes c.1926-1963; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/36-38

Translations
Date: [1930s]; 1958; 1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/36
Language(s) of Material: English, Latin; Greek, Ancient
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to translations by MacNeice:

Lectures
Date: [1930s]; 1959
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/37
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Notes and scripts for lectures by Louis MacNeice:

Undergraduate student notes
Date: c.1926-1930
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/38
Language(s) of Material: English, Greek, Ancient
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Notebooks containing, and loose pages of, undergraduate lecture notes, drafts of essays, revision notes etc.:

B.5   Broadcast scripts and related papers 1941-1975; n.d.

Scope and Content

Unless otherwise stated, the papers refer to broadcasts for transmission by radio.

Arrangement

The radio broadcast scripts are arranged alphabetically by title.


Full range of shelfmarks:

MS. 10641/39-50

Broadcasts, A-F
Date: 1956-1961; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/39
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, Faust
Date: 1949; 1962
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/40
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, F-L
Date: 1943-1948; 1961-1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/41
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, M
Date: 1959-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/42
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, Na-Ne
Date: 1961
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/43
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, No
Date: 1944; 1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/44
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, O-P
Date: 1952; 1961-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/45
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, Persons from Porlock
Date: 1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/46
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Annotated script and related papers, c. 1963. Also includes MS. and TS. notes and drafts.

Broadcasts, P-W
Date: 1941; 1953-1960; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/47
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of radio plays and other broadcast programmes:

Broadcasts, Film and TV
Date: 1957; [1961]; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/48
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Scripts, some annotated, and related papers, of films and TV programmes:

Miscellaneous broadcast material
Date: 1946; 1952; 1961-1966; 1975; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/49
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Miscellaneous broadcast material, including programmes about Louis MacNeice:

Published radio plays
Date: 1944; c.1947; 1964; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/50
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to published radio plays:

B.6   Notes c.1927-1964; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/51-55

Literary notebooks
Date: n.d. [c.1940s and 1950s]
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/51
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (6 volumes)

Scope and Content

Notebooks containing notes and drafts for poems, articles, broadcasts etc.:

Notebooks
Date: c.1927; 1947; 1964; n.d. [1940s-1950s]
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/52
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (7 volumes)

Scope and Content

7 octavo notebooks:

Notebooks
Date: n.d. [c.1940s and 1950s]
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/53
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box

Scope and Content

23 octavo notebooks containing miscellaneous notes and lists, notes on appointments and expenses, addresses, rough notes for broadcasts/poems/lectures etc. Includes notebooks mainly containing travel notes and observations on Egypt and Sudan (4 vols.); India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Singapore etc. (5 vols.); Ghana; Crete; Oxford. Also includes a British Museum library order slip, with carbon copy, in MacNeice's name for Proclus, Elements of Theology, ed. E.R. Dodds.

BBC notepads
Date: n.d. [c.1940-1963]
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/54
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box

Scope and Content

11 BBC notepads containing notes for, and drafts of, broadcasts, poems and other writings, n.d. [1940-1963]. Titles are added in various hands, including 'Talks on Snow, Empson etc [rough drafts]', 'Notes for Persons from Porlock, Notes for Mad Island (pub version)', 'Ghana for BBC', 'Oxford Colleges', 'Notes - chiefly - for B.B.C. programme on Rome', 'Grettir Saga', 'T.V'.

Miscellaneous literary manuscripts and notes
Date: c.1930-1963; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/55
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Includes:

B.7   Papers about MacNeice and his work c.1935-1989; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/56-58

Biographical notes and personal recollections
Date: 1930s; 1945-1969; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/56
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Poems, reminiscences, biographical notes and other personal recollections of Louis MacNeice:

Articles
Date: c.1970; 1975; 1985-1989; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/57
Language(s) of Material: English, French
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Articles, essays and other writings about Louis MacNeice and his works:

Press cuttings
Date: c.1934-1988; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/58
Language(s) of Material: English, French
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Press cuttings, and photocopies of newspaper articles, relating to Louis MacNeice and his work, mainly reviews of his books, plays etc., but also some biographical/personality pieces, and tributes and obituaries, c.1934-1963. Also includes articles about MacNeice's posthumous publications, and on publications about MacNeice, 1963-1988.

B.8   (Literary) papers not by MacNeice 1963-1979; n.d.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/59-60

E.R. Dodds papers
Date: 1963-1976; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/59
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence and other papers by E.R. Dodds, relating to Louis MacNeice:

Miscellaneous typescripts
Date: n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/60
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (1 folder)

Scope and Content

Miscellaneous literary papers not by Louis MacNeice:

C   Diaries, personal papers and miscellaneous 1917-1963; n.d.

Scope and Content

Early personal diaries, travel notes and diaries, and BBC work appointment diaries, as well as personal papers found at various places in the collection. Also includes some photographs, which were separated from correspondence and other papers in the course of previous re-arrangement of the material, and the death mask of Louis MacNeice.

Fulll range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/61-67; Library Objects, JL 954


Diaries
Date: 1917-1919; 1921-1923
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/61
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Personal diaries for 1917, 1919, 1921 and 1923, and diary fragments Jan-Jun 1918.

Travel diaries/journals; address books
Date: 1938-1939; 1950-1951; 1955; [1950s]
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/62
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (4 folders)

Scope and Content

Comprises:

BBC Diaries
Date: 1951-1959
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/63
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

12 small octavo volumes of appointment diaries 'BBC Desk Diary': 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956 (2 vols.), 1957, 1958, 1959 (3 vols.). [Duplicate volumes 1956 and 1959 by MacNeice's secretary or assistant?]

BBC Diaries
Date: 1960-1962
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/64
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

6 small octavo volumes of appointment diaries 'BBC Desk Diary': 1960 (2 vols.) 1961 (2 vols.), 1962 (2 vols.). [Duplicate volumes by MacNeice's secretary or assistant? 1961 duplicate marked 'Jenny S.', 1962 duplicate marked 'Jenny'.]

Personal papers
Date: 1931-1963
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/65
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Personal papers, including financial, administrative and legal papers, of Louis MacNeice, including:

Photographs
Date: early 1920s; 1930s; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/66
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box

Scope and Content

Comprises:

Restrictions on Access:

Some material is held in cold storage conditions and a one week advance notice is required for reader access. Please contact curatorial or conservation staff for details.


Death mask
Date: 1963
Shelfmark: Library Objects, JL 954
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 item

Scope and Content

Death mask of Louis MacNeice, made by George McCann, 1963.

Restrictions on Access:

Closed.


Prints and miscellaneous
Date: c.1928/1929-1969; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/67
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box

Scope and Content

Comprises:

D   Papers of Hedli MacNeice 1931-1989; n.d.

Biographical/Historical

Antoinette Millicent Hedley MacNeice, née Anderson, was born in Claygate, Surrey, 25 May 1907. Her father was Captain in the Canadian Military, whose family had emigrated to Canada from Northumberland. Hedli, as everyone called her, mainly grew up in Canada and in Switzerland, and studied singing in England and Germany. In 1934, she moved to London, where she joined the Group Theatre, and late the Players Theatre. She performed in cabaret programmes, and in the initial productions of plays by W.H. Auden and Christopher Isherwood ( The Dance of the Death, The Dog Beneath The Skin, The Ascent of F6), and by Louis MacNeice. In 1938, Auden and Benjamin Britten the collaborated on a series of cabaret song especially for her, of which ‘Funeral Blues’ and ‘Tell me the truth about love’ are the best known. Hedli Anderson started a relationship with Louis MacNeice at the end of 1941, and married him in July 1942. Their daughter, Brigid Corinna (‘Bimba’) was born in July 1943. The new Mrs. MacNeice kept her maiden name as her stage name, and as Hedli Anderson she performed jointly with her husband in recitals of songs and poetry in the 1940s and 1950s, including tours of the USA in 1953 and 1954. The couple separated in the autumn of 1960, and in 1961 Hedli MacNeice moved to Ireland, where she owned, and cooked in, the ‘The Spinnaker’ restaurant in Scilly, Kinsale, County Cork. Later, she moved to France, where in 1981 she opened the shop 'Direct d'Irlande’ in Moncourt in the Île-de-France region. She died in France in 1990.


Scope and Content

Correspondence of Hedli MacNeice, including letters from and about, Louis MacNeice (1930s to the 1980s), papers relating to her career as a singer (1930s to the 1950s), memorabilia about her life and businesses in Ireland and France (1960s-1980s) and some (autobiographical) notes and diaries.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. 10641/68-75


Letters from Louis MacNeice
Date: 1947-1961
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/68
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Mainly personal letters from Louis MacNeice on travels to India/Pakistan, Egypt/Sudan, Gold Coast (Ghana), and South Africa, 1947-1959. Also includes some letters mentioning work on radio/film scripts (United Nations, [1948]; Everest programme, 1953).

Personal correspondence
Date: 1931-1989; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/69
Language(s) of Material: English, German
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence, mainly of personal nature, to Hedli Anderson, later MacNeice, 1931-1989 and n.d. Correspondents include Mrs P. Hedley Anderson [her mother], A.E. Dodds, Kevin Andrews, 'Bill', Edith Sitwell, Mercy McCann, George McCann, 'Laz', Kate O'Brian, Alan and Isabel Rawsthorne, 'Paul', 'Goronwy', 'Nancy', Robert Medley, Pat High-Smith, 'John', Elizabeth Williams, W.H. Auden (one letter, n.d.), Roz or (Roz?)Driscoll, Hamish Henderson, 'Norah', Peter [?Pears], and many unidentified relatives, friends and acquaintances. Correspondence 1970-1989 and some letters n.d. = Closed. Includes annotated galley proofs of a book by Kevin Andrews, Cities of the World: Athens, 1967.

Professional correspondence
Date: 1939-1989; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/70
Language(s) of Material: English, German
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Professional correspondence by Hedli Anderson, later MacNeice, mainly relating to recitals, recordings, and other engagements and collaborations as a singer, to the history and interpretation of songs, etc., 1939-1975 and n.d. Also includes correspondence with The Britten Estate and with the Britten-Pears Foundation regarding Anderson's work with Britten and W.H. Auden ('Cabaret Songs') in 1939, 1983-1989.

Correspondence regarding Louis MacNeice
Date: 1963-1989
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/71
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (4 folders)

Scope and Content

Correspondence relating to Louis MacNeice's death, his literary estate, posthumous publications from his papers, his biography, etc., including:

Song programmes and recitals
Date: c.1942; 1956-1959; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/72
Language(s) of Material: English, German, French, Greek
Extent: 1 box (6 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to song programmes by Hedli Anderson, later MacNeice, including:

Song programmes and recitals
Date: 1934-1965; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/73
Language(s) of Material: English, French
Extent: 1 box (4 folders)

Scope and Content

Papers relating to Hedli Anderson's career as a singer, including:

Notes and diaries
Date: [1940s]; 1951-1988; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/74
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (3 folders)

Scope and Content

Notes and diaries by Hedli MacNeice, including:

Business papers and miscellaneous
Date: [1960s-1970s]; 1978-1988; n.d.
Shelfmark: MS. 10641/75
Language(s) of Material: English
Extent: 1 box (2 folders)

Scope and Content

Includes:


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07 January 2019