University of Texas, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Hon. Edward Sackville-West:

An Inventory of His Collection at the Harry Ransom Center

Creator: Sackville-West, Edward, Hon., 1901-1965
Title: Hon. Edward Sackville-West Collection
Dates: 1922-1948, undated
Abstract: Includes manuscripts and some correspondence of the British novelist and music critic Edward Sackville-West. The manuscripts represent several novels, a World War II-era radio drama based on Homer's Odyssey with music by Benjamin Britten, and a biography of Thomas De Quincey.
Call Number: Manuscript Collection MS-3675
Extent: 5 boxes (2.10 linear feet)
Language: English
Repository: The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Center



Open for research

Administrative Information

Processed by:

Joan Sibley and Katherine Noble, 2012


This finding aid replicates and replaces information previously available only in a card catalog. Please see the explanatory note at the end of this finding aid for information regarding the arrangement of the manuscripts as well as the abbreviations commonly used in descriptions.

Container List


1.1 Unidentified article on Hugo Wolf, signed typescript / fragment with handwritten revisions, 3 pages, undated.
1.2 Comments on review of his books, handwritten manuscript / notes written with clippings pasted-in, 25 pages, undated.
1.3-5 Mandrake over the water carrier, signed handwritten manuscript with revisions, 391 pages, 27 October 1927 (at end).
1.6-2.2 Piano quintet, handwritten manuscript with revisions, 404 pages, 1924 (Bourne).
2.3-4 The rescue: A melodrama for broadcasting based on Homer's Odyssey, music by Benjamin Britten, signed mimeo / radio script with handwritten music cues, approximately 190 pages in 2 scrapbooks, 1943, 1948.
2.5 The ruin, signed handwritten manuscript with revisions, 302 pages, September 1922-September 1923.
3.1-5 The sun in Capricorn, handwritten manuscript with revisions, 879 pages, July 1931-December 1933.
4.1-3 Thomas de Quincey: His life and works, signed typescript / incomplete with revisions and inserts, 540 pages, undated. Last chapter lacking.


4.4 ALS to Marsh, Edward Howard, Sir, 28 April 1936.


4.5 Bairdsmith, F. M. APCS to Sackville-West, 18 June 1935.
Walker, Frank. ALS to Sackville-West, 7 May 1946.
Wauquier, René. TLS to Sackville-West, 18 November 1945. Enclosed with this: carbon typescript, first 5 pages of French translation of The rescue.


4.6 De Quincey, Thomas, 1785-1859. TccL / copies to members of the Wordsworth family, 1803-1818. For Sackville-West's book on De Quincey.
4.7 Royal Horticultural Society. FL to Rawnsley, H. D., Mrs., June 1947.
Sackville-West, Edward, Hon.:
4.8-9 Note files for literature, 2 handwritten manuscripts / alphabetical files, approximately 275 pages, undated.
5.1 Note file for music and literature, handwritten manuscripts / alphabetical file / incomplete, 42 pages, undated.
5.2 Note file for music and painting, handwritten manuscripts / alphabetical file, 150 pages, undated.
5.3 Research notes for projected work on Stendhal, handwritten manuscript / notes, 170 pages in notebook, undated. Various handwritten notes and newspaper clippings laid inside.
5.4 Thomas De Quincey, His life and works, handwritten manuscript / notes, 52 pages, undated.
5.5 Thomas De Quincey: His life and works, handwritten manuscript / notes, 212 pages in notebook, undated. Various handwritten notes and newspaper clippings laid inside.

Explanatory Note Concerning Manuscript Collections Cataloged in the Card Catalog

Prior to 1990 when archival cataloging procedures were adopted at the Ransom Center, all manuscript collections were described in a card catalog.

Organization of Collections:

Manuscripts for each author collection were organized into four categories:

  • Works: manuscripts by the author, arranged alphabetically by title;
  • Letters: the author's outgoing correspondence, arranged alphabetically by recipient name;
  • Recipient: the author's incoming correspondence, arranged alphabetically by the author of the letter; and
  • Miscellaneous: all other manuscripts and correspondence, arranged alphabetically by creator.

Materials that did not fit into these categories, such as art, photographs, books, and near-print materials such as newspaper clippings, were dispersed to other Ransom Center collections for cataloging and storage.

Abbreviations Used in Descriptions:

The symbols below were used in combinations. For example ALS means autograph letter signed; Tccms means typed carbon copy manuscript, etc.

  • A = autograph (i.e., handwritten)
  • T = typed
  • S = signed
  • I = initialed
  • Ms = manuscript
  • Mss = manuscripts
  • L = letter
  • FL = form letter
  • N = note
  • D = document
  • C = card
  • PC = post card
  • cc = carbon copy
  • p = page
  • pp = pages
  • l = leaf
  • ll = leaves
  • nd = no date
  • inc d = incomplete date