Autobiographical notes and commentaries on literary works

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 58 Add MS 88918/7/1-3
  • Alternative Id.
      (ark) ark:/81055/vdc_100000000047.0x000120
  • Dates of Creation
      7 Jun 1985-6 Dec 1997
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      3 folders

Scope and Content

Partly typewritten and printed, partly autograph material all of which contains autobiographical information about Hughes and / or insight into his literary work. These folders include undated material.

Add MS 88918/7/1: This folder includes - a document entitled ‘Comments About Books at Sotheby’s’ dated March 1992 with information about the creation and literary background of Hughes’s work; and copies of letters sent by Hughes to the following individuals - 'Mr Bibby' (Hughes wrote about Iron Man, 14th January 1996), Anne-Lorraine Bujon (undated), Ms Cole (6th December 1997), Terry Gifford (in response to biographical queries, 6th October 1997), Geoffrey Moorhouse (8th January 1994, letter marked 'Not sent - shortened it'), Elmar Schenkel (25th April 1986, notes on text) and Carol Lee (6th January 1992). Several drafts of letters to Leonard, one of which is marked 'Leonard Scigaj' and a biography of Hughes, which he has annotated are included together with a copy of a letter to an unidentified recipient. A large number of drafts of autobiographical pieces, autograph notes about Sylvia and Aurelia Plath and the publication of Letters Home and draft introductory passages to be used for poetry readings are included.

Add MS 88918/7/2: This folder includes - some autobiographical material and information about literary works written in the form of responses to questions (it is not always clear exactly what the questions were or who sent them), and notes for poetry readings and about why Hughes wrote poetry are included. A bundle of papers with a note marked 'attempts to find the Foreword for THE HEAD and other tales as 'Fragment of an Autobiog[raphy]' are also included. It appears that these drafts were an early attempt to write a foreword for the prose collection that was later published as Difficulties of a Bridegroom. A 'Draft of a talk about Magical Poetry' for Tony Dyson, notes on 'violence' in poetry with reference to Blake and Yeats (which appear to be a draft of the chapter 'Poetry and Violence' published in Winter Pollen (1994), and untitled drafts about writing poetry and pages from a notebook with details of the place and date where Hughes wrote much of his poetry are also included.

Add MS 88918/7/3: This folder includes - a bibliography of Hughes's work and notes for poetry readings. One section of material that appears to have been written in the form of an interview transcript some of which may relate to communication between Hughes and the academic, Ekbert Faas, a series of answers written by Hughes to Faas, which have been torn in half (the fragments have been matched to their corresponding halves) and a set of papers annotated ‘Faas Questions’ are also included. Another transcript of an interview between Hughes and Faas can be found in Add MS 88918/139.


Commentaries on identifiable poetry collections previously in this folder have been placed with the collections to which they relate.

Conditions Governing Access


Not Public Record(s)