Copy letters

Scope and Content

Typescript copies of 8 letters from the writer John Addington Symonds, of which 7 are addressed to Dr John Johnston and 1 to Wallace. Symonds was one of the earliest champions of Whitman in England; he corresponded with the poet and wrote Walt Whitman: A Study (1893). These letters were written during the last 3 years of his life, and are mainly dated at Davos Platz in Switzerland, which Symonds had made his home.

Topics covered in the letters include: Johnston's Notes of a Visit to Walt Whitman; Symonds' great debt to Whitman and the extent of the poet's influence on him; the meaning of Whitman's 'Calamus' poems [Symonds had tried, unsuccessfully, to get Whitman admit to their homosexual implications]; the death of Whitman; Symonds' work on Michelangelo [his biography was published in 1893]; his work on Walt Whitman: A Study, for which he asks permission to use some of Johnston's photographs; Edward Carpenter; a visit from Leslie Stephen.

Stored with a typescript sheet dated Jul 1961, relating to copyright in the Symonds letters, presumably created by the John Rylands Library.

Typescript carbon copy.