John Galsworthy Letters Additional Collection

Scope and Content

An artificial collection created by the Special Collections Department comprising letters to and from John Galsworthy and Ada Galsworthy to various friends and colleagues, 1907-1949.

Administrative / Biographical History

John Galsworthy, 1867-1933, playwright and novelist; educated at Harrow and New College, Oxford; called to bar (Lincoln's Inn), 1890; published early novels under pseudonym John Sinjohn; The Man of Property , 1906; began the Forsyte Saga sequence (published collectively in 1922) in which he wrote with an exact and not unsympathetic observation of Victorian upper-class commercial society, continuing the story of its supersession by a more easy-going generation in the trilogy A Modern Comedy , 1929; his remarkably successful plays including The Silver Box , 1906, Justice , 1910; and The Skin Game , 1920, state a theme with great simplicity of construction and dialogue; Nobel Prize for Literature, 1932.

Reference: The Concise Dictionary of National Biography Part II 1901-1950 ( Oxford, 1967 ).


The letters are listed in order of acquisition.

Access Information

Open. Access to all registered researchers.

Acquisition Information

This collection was acquired over a long period of time from various sources beginning in 1964.

Other Finding Aids

Please see full catalogue for further details.

Alternative Form Available

Many of the papers within the collection are photocopies of originals.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the University Archivist, Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.


Further acquisitions are expected.

Related Material

University of Birmingham Information Services, Special Collections Department also holds the John Galsworthy Papers. A substantial part of the initial deposit of the Galsworthy Papers was sold by Sotheby in 1979 at the direction of the Galsworthy Trust. The papers are now housed at Forbes Magazine, Forbes Building, 60 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10011. The manuscript of Galsworthy's famous novel The Forsyte Saga was donated to the library of the British Museum (now the British Library) by Galsworthy himself during his lifetime.