Papers of Herbert Henry Asquith, 1st Earl of Oxford and Asquith (1852-1928)

Scope and Content

Asquith's papers consist of correspondence, including royal correspondence and cabinet letters; miscellaneous letters and memoranda arranged by subject; papers relating to the Irish question; papers by Asquith himself, including notes for speeches and manuscripts and typescripts of books; papers relating to parliamentary measures; parliamentary, cabinet and other offical papers; war maps; press cuttings; miscellaneous offical papers; papers relating to the post-war Liberal Party; non-official printed material; papers of various other individuals; and a later deposit of correspondence including, Asquith's letters to Sylvia Laura Henley.

Administrative / Biographical History

Herbert Henry Asquith, 1st Earl of Oxford and Asquith (1852-1928) was prime minister 1908-16. Details are given in the Dictionary of National Biography.

Access Information

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 given to Balliol College were made over to the Bodleian Library in 1964. The later deposit of correspondence was deposited in 1980 and given in 1982.


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

Custodial History

The main body of the Asquith Papers was given to Balliol College, Oxford in 1941 by the literary executors of Lord Oxford and Asquith, the Hon. Arthur Asquith and Sir Maurice Bonham Carter.

Corporate Names