Papers of the Gibb Memorial Trust

Scope and Content

The Gibb Memorial Trust was established in 1902 in memory of Elias John Wilkinson Gibb, a largely self-taught Arabic, Persian, and, above all, of Ottoman Turkish, died age 45 in 1901 and his mother established the Trust. These papers mainly cover the period 1927-1951 and consists of governance, finance and publication documents, produced mainly as a result of Charles Ambrose Storey's involvement as a Trustee of the Trust.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Gibb Memorial Trust was established in 1902 in the memory of Elias John Wilkinson Gibb a Turkish scholar. His mother, Jane Gibb established the Trust and she was one of the original trustees alongside Edward G. Browne, Guy Le Strange, Henry F. Amedroz, Alexander G. Ellis, Reynold A. Nicholson, and E. Denison Ross. Subsequent trustees included Mrs. Ida W. E. Ogilvy Gregory, E. J. W. Gibb's widow, and scholars such as Charles A. Storey, Hamilton A. R. Gibb, Reuben Levy, Arthur J. Arberry, Alfred F. L. Beeston and Harold W. Bailey. The current trustees can be found on the Trust's website . During the time of these papers the administration was undertaken by the Cambridge solicitor W.L. Raynes, and his son, E.G. Raynes.

The Trust's purpose was the publication of editions and translations of Arabic, Persian and Turkish texts. They comprised of a First Series published 1905-16, with a delayed volume of the Series not appearing until 1928, forming nos. 1-25 (in fact, several of these were multi-volume works); and a New Series, beginning in 1921, nos. 1 to 29 (again, some of these were multi-volume works). The Trust still continues to publish some volumes and reprint some of the original publications.

Charles Ambrose Storey was a British orientalist, best known for his bio-bibliographical survey of Persian literature. He served as a trustee of the Gibb Memorial Trust and was deeply involved in its administration during World War II, from when much of this material originates.


The material was divided according to the activities by which it was produce - those of governance, finance and publications of the Trust. Some of the correspondence covers more than one area. In this case it was assigned to the area with which it had the larger association.

Access Information

Open. Please contact the archivist using the email address given here. The archive is open on Tuesdays and Fridays 10-5, and Thursdays 2-5. Access is to any researcher without appointment but it will help if an appointment is made via phone or email. Please bring photo ID.

Acquisition Information

It is probable that the material was acquired by the Royal Asiatic Society within a large bequest of material from C.A. Storey. Before the time of cataloguing, this material had been separated from the other Storey papers and housed as the Gibb Memorial Trust.

Archivist's Note

This material was catalogue by Nancy Charley, RAS Archivist, in 2020.

Conditions Governing Use

Digital photography (without flash) for research purposes may be permitted upon completion of a copyright declaration form, and with respect to current UK copyright law.

Custodial History

It seems this material was the property of Charles Ambrose Storey, a trustee of the Trust, as much of the correspondence is addressed to him or is replies from him.

Related Material

The RAS Library Collections contain some works by Elias John Wilkinson Gibb . There are also some volumes of the Gibb Memorial Series . Further details can be found by following the links.