Papers of Boyd Alexander relating to William Beckford

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 161 MSS. Eng. lett. c. 687-95; Eng. misc. c. 888-93, d. 1288-98, e. 1446-58, f. 857-8; Facs. d. 291; Film 1766; Photogr. c. 5, d. 2; Top. gen. a. 23, fols. 1-2
  • Dates of Creation
      18th-20th century
  • Language of Material
      English, and Italian.
  • Physical Description
      46 shelfmarks

Scope and Content

Papers of Boyd Alexander relating to William Beckford, consisting of:  

  • Working notes, mainly relating to Alexander's published works on Beckford
  • Drafts of Alexander's unpublished works on Beckford, with related notes
  • Correspondence, press cuttings, prints, photocopies, articles and lectures, and printed items

Administrative / Biographical History

Boyd Alexander (1913-1980) published works on William Beckford (1760-1844), author, MP and art collector.

Conditions Governing Access

Entry to read in the Library is permitted only on presentation of a valid reader's card (for admissions procedures see

Acquisition Information

The papers were bequeathed by Alexander in 1980, together with: a number of printed books from Beckford's library, a copy of Marcel May La jeunesse de William Beckford (Paris, 1928) - 2695 d. 385; a presentation copy of Andr Parreaux, William Beckford (Paris, 1960) - 2695 d. 364; a printed law case, The House of Lords in appeal. Richard Beckford, appellant. William Beckford, respondent. The appellant's case ([London], 1723) - Vet. A5 a. 31 (5); photographs of a letter from Mendelssohn - MS. Deneke-Mendelssohn b. 13; and MSS. Eng. lett. c. 499-501; Eng. misc. e. 1236; Portuguese c. 1.


Collection level description created by Emily Tarrant, Department of Special Collections and Western Manuscripts.

Other Finding Aids

A catalogue of the collection is available online at

Related Material

See also Papers of William Beckford (1760-1844), author (MSS. Beckford a. 1-4, b. 1-8, c. 1-89, d. 1-29, e. 1-5, f. 1-5, g. 1-2) and Papers of William Beckford, 1787-1811 (MSS. Eng. lett. c. 499-501; Eng. misc. e. 1236; Portuguese c. 1).