Mountstuart Elphinstone: Chiefly private correspondence with friends and relatives

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 59 Mss Eur F88 Series 2
  • Alternative Id.
      (ark) ark:/81055/vdc_100000000015.0x0002e8
  • Dates of Creation
  • Language of Material
      English French Italian Latin Persian Hindi Marathi
  • Physical Description
      141 files

Scope and Content

Comprises the private and semi official correspondence of Mountstuart Elphinstone. This makes up a large part of the collection and has been arranged into four sub-series: juvenile and family correspondence; chiefly private correspondence with friends and relatives while in India; chiefly private correspondence with friends and relatives at home; and correspondence containing applications for money. The first sub-series contains mostly childhood letters from Mountstuart Elphinstone (there are also letters from his brother James Ruthven Elphinstone) to his parents and his siblings. He enjoyed a good relationship with his siblings, nieces and nephews and often exchanged letters with them. Letters from his nieces and nephews, such as John Elphinstone, 13th Lord Elphinstone, can be found in the second and third sub-series. The second and third sub-series have been divided between Elphinstone’s time in India (1807-1827) and his return to Britain after he resigned the Governorship of Bombay in 1827 (1827-1859). He corresponded with many people, including Charles Theophilus Mecalfe, Baron Metcalfe, Sir John Malcolm, General Lionel Smith, John Adam, Sir Charles Adam and Sir Frederick William Adam, and his nephew John Elphinstone, 13th Lord Elphinstone, who often kept him up to date with news from India and from the Houses of Parliament. He also frequently corresponded with Sir Henry Strachey and Sir Edward Strachey, James Cunninghame Grant Duff, Captain Robert E Burrowes and many more. Topics of correspondence vary but the news of the day, events in India and literature were always discussed. The final sub-series are letters containing applications for money (they are also dotted throughout the second and third sub-series).

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