Alfred Edward Housman: Letters

Scope and Content

Letters from A.E. Housman, including some to Sir Geoffrey Keynes, 1928-1930, mainly concerning editions of Housman's poetry, with other letters and Housman-related material dating from 1906 to 1978. Items 1-11 (excluding 10A) are bound into a volume marked 'Letters from A.E.H.' on the spine and inscribed inside as belonging to Sir Geoffrey Keynes. Items 10A and 12-19 have been loosely inserted into the volume.

1. Housman to Mr Lowe, publisher, 4 July 1906.

2. Housman to 'My dear Brown', 3 Nov. 1922.

3. Housman to [Sir Geoffrey Keynes], 18 June 1928.

4. Envelope enclosing item 5, postmarked 13 July 1928.

5. Housman to Keynes, 13 July 1928.

6. Envelope enclosing item 7, postmarked 13 Jan. 1929.

7. Housman to Keynes, 13 Jan. 1929.

8. 'S.C.R.' (Sir Sydney Castle Roberts) to Keynes, 2 Feb. 1930.

9. Housman to Keynes, 28 Feb. 1930.

10. Poem by Housman, 'Illic jacet', written in another hand and copied from The Academy, c. 1899.

10A. Housman to A.F. Scholfield, 20 May 1932.

11. Housman to Keynes, 10 June 1933.

12. Housman to Lady Darwin, 1 Jan. 1934.

13. Part of a sale catalogue, Stonehill, New Haven, Conn., Feb. 1939.

14. Cutting from a Sotheby's catalogue, 5 Apr. 1939.

15. Henry Maas, editor of The Letters of A.E. Housman, to Keynes, 27 Jan. 1972.

16. Cutting from a Sotheby's catalogue, 5 Dec. 1972.

17. Newspaper cutting of a letter from Robert Conquest, undated, possibly 26 Oct. 1973.

18. Newspaper cutting of a poem, undated, possibly 1973.

19. Part of a sale catalogue, 25 July 1978.

Administrative / Biographical History

Alfred Edward Housman (1859-1936) was educated at Bromsgrove School and St. John's College, Oxford, where he obtained a first class in classical moderations in 1879, but failed to obtain honours in lit. hum. He worked in the Patent Office, 1882-1892, before becoming professor of Latin at University College, London, 1892-1911, and at Cambridge, 1911-1936. He published many articles and reviews of classical subjects, which covered most of the chief poets from Lucilius to Juvenal, as well as editing Ovid's Ibis (1894), the five Books of Manilius (1903-1930), Juvenal (1905), and Lucan (1926). He also wrote poetry, much of which was published. Housman refused all honours, but accepted the honorary fellowship of St John's College, Oxford, in 1911.

Access Information

Open for consultation by holders of a Reader's Ticket valid for the Manuscripts Reading Room.

Acquisition Information

Received from the library of Sir Geoffrey L. Keynes, 1982.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives. The biographical history was compiled with reference to the entry on Housman in the Concise Dictionary of National Biography, Part II, 1901-1970, p. 340 (Oxford University Press, 1982).

Other Finding Aids

Additional Manuscripts Catalogue.

Related Material

Cambridge University Library holds other correspondence of Housman, MS.Add.7735.