British and Irish Literature Collections


Sir John Tenniel. Study for the illustration "Alice's evidence," for Alice's adventures in wonderland. Preliminary pencil drawing heightened with ink and Chinese white on paper, 1864. 16 x 12 cm. bMS Eng 718.6. Gift of Mrs. Harcourt Amory, 1927.

British and Irish Literature Collections

Houghton Library’s collections of 19th-century British and Irish literature contain the papers of many writers and artists, and include strong holdings on the Romantics, with manuscript collections of John Keats and his circle, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Mary Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley, and William Wordsworth, along with manuscript collections of Charlotte Brontë, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Robert Browning, Charles Dodgson, Rudyard Kipling, Andrew Lang, Edward Lear, Walter Pater, Sir William Rothenstein, Algernon Swinburne, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, William Makepeace Thackeray, Oscar Wilde, and Francis James Child’s papers on English and Scottish ballads.

Houghton’s collections also include the papers of the following 20th-century British and Irish writers and artists: W.H. Auden, Max Beerbohm, James Joyce, John Masefield, George Moore, Dorothy Sayers, George Bernard Shaw, Dylan Thomas, and William Butler Yeats.

Books in parts, broadsides (particularly of poetry and ballads), and important association copies have also been collected significantly.

In all cases, collections of papers are complimented by in-depth collections of these authors’ printed works. For some authors, such as Charles Dickens, emphasis has been placed on their printed books. Those seeking details on the Library’s holdings should first search HOLLIS, the library’s online catalog.

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