Papers of William Christopher Atkinson, 1902-1992, Professor of Spanish Studies, University of Glasgow, Scotland

Scope and Content

The collection consists primarily of articles and talks written by Professor Atkinson on topics related to Hispanic Studies, and includes:

  • Scripts for articles and talks written by Professor Atkinson, 1946-1974;
  • Publications by Professor Atkinson, 1930-1974;
  • Reminiscences by Professor Atkinson, c1986-1987;
  • University of Glasgow material, 1968-1972.

Administrative / Biographical History

William Christopher Atkinson was born on 09 August  1902  in Belfast, son of Robert Joseph Atkinson. He married Evelyn Lucy Wakefield of Hampstead and had one son and three daughters. He was educated at the University of Belfast and the University of Madrid. His first academic post was as Lecturer in Spanish at Armstrong College, Newcastle upon Tyne from  1926-1932  , leaving to become the Stevenson Professor of Hispanic Studies at the  University of Glasgow . He remained in this post until his retirement in  1972  .

Professor Atkinson was Honorary Secretary of the Modern Humanities Research Association from  1929-1936  ; Head of the Spanish and Portuguese sections of the Foreign Research and Press Service of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, 1939-1943; Visiting British Council Lecturer to Latin America 1946, 1960, 1971; Honorary Professor National University of Columbia 1946; Chairman of the first Scottish cultural delegation to USSR 1954; Carnegie Research Fellow visiting US Universities 1955; Member of Hispanic Society of America 1955; Rockefeller Fellow visiting Latin-American Universities 1957; Visiting Professor of Portuguese Studies, University College of Rhodesia and Nyasaland 1963. Atkinson was made Commander of the Order of Prince Henry the Navigator, Portugal in 1972. Within the University of Glasgow he also held the post of Senate's Assessor from  1952-1960  and Director of the Institute of Latin-American Studies,  1966-1972  .

His publications include: Spain, A Brief History, (1934); The Lusiads of Camoens, (1952); The Remarkable Life of Don Diego, (1958); A History of Spain and Portugal, (1960); The Conquest of New Granada, (1961); and The Happy Captive, (1977).


Arranged according to the physical appearance of the file folders as they are contained in boxes.

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Deposit: Mrs Elspeth M Horseman, Professor Atkinson's daughter: June 1992

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Archivist.

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 0248 procedures

Custodial History



None expected

Location of Originals

This material is original


No known publications using this material.

Additional Information

Description compiled in line with the following international standards: International Council on Archives, ISAD(G) Second Edition, September 1999Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names, 1997and

Fonds level compiled by Vikki Laidlaw, Hub Project Assistant, 14 October 2004. Fonds level converted to Encoded Archival Description by Andrew Thompson. Lower level descriptions compiled by Alma Topen, Assistant Archivist (Cataloguing), June 2011. Catalogue converted to Encoded Archival Decription by Michelle Kaye, Archives Assistant, 23 December 2011. Catalogue edited by Michelle Kaye, Archives Assistant, 2 August 2012. Amended by Sam Maddra, Assistant Archivist (cataloguing), 10 February 2014.

Geographical Names