Collection: BC MS 20c Berry: Francis Berry Archive

Archive Collection icon Archive Collection: Francis Berry Archive

Details

Title: Francis Berry Archive

Level: Collection 

Classmark: BC MS 20c Berry

Creator(s): Berry, Francis

Date: 1931-1994

Main language: English

Size and medium: 8 boxes; manuscript, typescript, press cuttings, and printed material (some photocopy).

Persistent link: https://explore.library.leeds.ac.uk/special-collections-explore/8537 

Collection group(s): English Literature

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Description

Comprises:
(1) Berry's correspondence, chiefly to Wilson Knight, 1931-1979, but also to Professor W.F. Jackson Knight;
(2) Berry's literary papers relating to (a) his poetry, including autograph manuscript and typescript drafts of his collections 'The Gowspel of Fire', 'The Snake in the Moon', 'The Iron Christ', 'Fall of a Tower', 'Murdock and other Poems', 'The Galloping Centaur', 'Morant Bay and other Poems', and 'Ghosts of Greenland', and similar drafts of individual poems, together with a manuscript notebook of poems, some related correspondence, and a printer's proof copy of 'Morant Bay and other Poems'; (b) his novel, 'I Tell of Greenland', including 30 autograph manuscript notebooks containing the original text, the autograph typescript draft used by the publishers (Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1977), Berry's revisions/corrections to the proofs, the printer's proof copy, and related correspondence from the publishers to Berry, 1976-1977;
(c) his literary-critical publications, including autograph manuscript and typescript drafts of 'Poet's Grammar', 'The Shakespeare Inset' (together with 4 autograph notebooks and extensive printed galley proofs), 'Thoughts on Poetic Time' and 'Masefield the narrative Poet' (the latter two essays being his inaugural lectures in London and Sheffield respectively), extensive manuscript and typescript material for a collection of essays entitled 'The Unfolding Shakespeare', and some further similar material for other essays on the medieval poem, Ibsen, Shakespeare, and 'How to get rid';
(d) his plays, including autograph manuscript and typescript drafts of 'Routine, or, The Daily State', 'The Near Singing Dome', 'The Bride of Mosta', and 'The Martyr';
and (e) his miscellaneous other writings, including some further correspondence, material relating to John Cowper Powys, a typescript draft of an untitled short story, some of his book reviews (notably of Wilson Knight's works 'The Wheel of Fire' and 'The Burning Oracle'), and material concerning his close friend Wilson Knight, notably letters containing a recommendation that Wilson Knight be given a knighthood;
(3) Papers by Wilson Knight relating to Berry, including an essay entitled 'Francis Berry', dated 1961, and a review of Berry's collection of poems 'Morant Bay and other Poems', and notably Wilson Knight correspondence recommending Francis Berry for the poet laureateship, and for an honorary doctorate; and
(4) A copy of Berry's published collection of poems entitled 'Acquisition; From the Red Fort' (1984); and
(5) a photograph of Francis Berry.

Administrative or biographical history

Francis Berry, the poet, was born on 23 March 1915. He held chairs in English at the University of Sheffield (1947-1970) and at Royal Holloway College, University of London (1970-1980), and formed a close friendship with Professor George Wilson Knight, to whom the majority of the letters in his collection were sent. He published numerous collections of poems, besides criticism, radio plays, and a novel. For fuller details of his life and achievements see 'Who's who'. Francis Berry died on 10 October 2006.

Access and usage

Access

This collection has not been listed in detail and access to parts of it may be restricted under the Data Protection Act and other relevant legislation. If you would like to request access to any part of this collection, please contact Special Collections. Upon receipt of your request, a member of the team will discuss your requirements with you and review relevant material accordingly.

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Related subjects

WARNING: many of our records have not been classified by subject. So if you search our catalogue by subject using the links below then you are unlikely to find all relevant records. But you will find some...

Letters

English poetry

English literature

English fiction

English drama

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