Letters from Evelyn Underhill to Margaret Robinson, 1904-1917.

Scope and Content

Fifty one autograph letters and one autograph postcard from Evelyn Underhill, to Miss Margaret Robinson, at one time resident at 30 Vine St, Liverpool, together with one autograph and one printed poem by Underhill. The letters are printed in Charles Williams (ed.) The Letters of Evelyn Underhill (1943), where the recipient is identified only as M.R. Underhill offers spiritual guidance, and discusses mystical works, translations, and preparations for new articles and books.

Not printed in the Williams collection are:

  • ms5096: Autograph postcard, signed, Evelyn Underhill to Margaret Robinson. Offering to send a book on neo-Platonism on her return to England. Signed Evelyn Stuart Moore. 28 August 1907.
  • ms5134: printed text, excised from an unidentified volume, of the poem 'Corpus Christi' by Evelyn Underhill.
  • ms5135: autograph text of a poem by Evelyn Underhill entitled 'Mid Lent: Invitatory' beginning 'Come, break thy fast'.

Administrative / Biographical History

Evelyn Underhill (1875-1941) was a writer on mysticism and spiritual life. She published 39 books, her major work being Mysticism: a Study of the Nature and Development of Man's Spiritual Consciousness(1911), edited mystical texts and wrote many articles, especially as theological editor for The Spectator. She became interested in religion after a trip to Italy in her early twenties, dallied with spiritualism, wished to convert to Catholicism under the guidance of Frederick von Hgel and then settled into Anglicanism. She took on the spiritual direction of others in the Anglican Church, leading retreats. She married Hubert Stuart Moore in 1907. She worked in naval intelligence during World War I but became a committed pacifist on the eve of the Second World War.


Numbered sequence in chronological order.

Access Information

By appointment with the Keeper of Manscripts. Access to records containing confidential information may be restricted.

Acquisition Information

Gifted to the library by Miss M Pate, May 1959.


ms5093 and ms5094 together comprise one letter.Extracts from several letters appear in typescript in msBV5095.U6 (ms5075).

Other Finding Aids

Individual Manuscripts and Small Collections database available as part of Manuscripts Database

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

Letters contained in green folder with ties.Paper: various sizes between 22.4x14.6cm folded and 20.3x25.4cm. ms5096: 14.1x9cm.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Maia Sheridan, Archives Hub project archivist, based on material from the Manuscripts Database

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright lies with the heirs of Evelyn Underhill to 2011. Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Keeper of Manuscripts. Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Custodial History

Formerly in the possession of a cousin of Margaret Robinson.




Charles Williams (ed.) The Letters of Evelyn Underhill(1943)