Letters From Mervyn Peake (part 2)

Scope and Content

Comprises autograph letters sent by Peake to his wife Maeve Gilmore whilst travelling through Europe on assignment for the Leader magazine, where he attended the war crimes trial of Nazi officer Peter Back and visited Belsen concentration camp:

  • A. ‘Darling little lover’: undated (2 leaves).
  • B. ‘Darling Maeve’: inscribed 'Hotel Scribe, Paris'; undated [the three leaves appear to have been written separately but on the same day].
  • C. ‘Most dearly beloved’: [from Wiesbaden] undated (4 leaves).
  • D. ‘Sweetest wife’: contains sketch of German boy and girl; inscribed 'Bad Neuenahr. Just south of Bonn'; undated (4 leaves).
  • E. ‘Exquisite darling’: inscribed 'Bad Neuenahr, South of Bonn'; 12 June 1945 (5 leaves).
  • F. ‘My own sweetheart’: undated [first leaf probably written on 14 June - Maeve’s birthday; remaining part of letter probably written 16 June] (4 leaves).
  • G. ‘Maeve, my most perfect darling’: inscribed 'near Kiel'; contains sketch of man in canoe under script; 21 June [1945] [the day after visiting Belsen] (3 leaves).

Also includes two loose envelopes, dated 8 June 1945 and 18 June 1945.

Letter dated 12 June 1945 was written 'a week and a day' since seeing Maeve which indicates that Peake probably left London on 5 June.

Conditions Governing Access


Not Public Record(s)