Herbert Antcliffe Manuscripts

Scope and Content

A collection of both manuscript and printed works by Herbert Antcliffe (1875-1964) including published and unpublished material, both musical and textual, during the period 1899 to 1961 (where dated)

Administrative / Biographical History

The collection came to the Library in two separate sections, the first being a collection of typescript copies of unpublished works on the history of both music and Flemish literature (MS 45 - 49) donated by the author in 1961, and the second a more extensive and varied collection of works (MS 227) bequeathed at his death in 1964 and placed in the Music Library until 1998. The latter includes both published and unpublished material, comprising Antcliffe's own musical works, verse, stage works, translations, articles on music, drawings, and other material.

Herbert Antcliffe, musicologist, composer and journalist, was born in Sheffield in 1875. Starting work as a music critic with the Sheffield Daily Telegraph in 1895, he moved to the Evening Standard in 1916. Much of his working life was spent as a music and literary critic in London and Holland; in 1925 he undertook the post of correspondent in Holland of the Daily Mail, and also contributed articles on Dutch art, music and politics to the London Times, as well as acting as correspondent of the New York Herald Tribune and the South African Argus group. From 1928 onwards he was successively Treasurer, Vice-President and President of the Foreign Press Association in Holland, resuming this last post after the war. Caught in Holland by the Nazi invasion he was unable to do any journalistic work during the Occupation, during which both he and his Dutch wife suffered from near-starvation. In January 1949 he returned to Britain.

Antcliffe was the author of several books on music, and in recognition of his services to British music was awarded a Civil List Pension. He was in addition a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. In the Netherlands he was created, in 1938, a Chevalier, and in 1948 promoted to be Officer, in the Order of Orange Nassau by Queen Wilhelmina.

Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 5th edition, has an entry under Antcliffe.


By category

Conditions Governing Access

Available to all researchers, by appointment

Acquisition Information

By donation and bequest of the author


Description prepared by Lawrence Aspden

Other Finding Aids


Conditions Governing Use

According to document