Collected literary manuscripts of Vivian de Sola Pinto (1895-1969), Professor of Englishat the University of Nottingham, 1598-1969

Scope and Content

The collection includes early literary works which were collected from various sources by Viviande Sola Pinto, and other material showing his research interests. It does not include any generalcorrespondence received by Pinto or any academic or administrative papers which would help toexplain the significant role he undoubtedly had in University College Nottingham and, from 1949, inthe University of Nottingham. The following elements make up the principal items in thecollection.

Manuscript quarto volume, in limp vellum, bearing in indistinct hand the identification 'SamuelBrentniell his book Anno Dom. 16[??]'. It seems to have been originally used as a commonplace book,with pages divided into columns and some clearly headed by words in Latin, in alphabetical order.Much of this text is in Latin or, occasionally, Greek, in very compressed hand, possibly for studentreference. There are several hands present, and apparently several purposes of writing.

At some stage the volume has been turned upside down, and copies of poems fill what werepresumably empty spaces. The handwriting is extremely small and cramped throughout the volume andconsiderable research would be required to make a thorough analysis of the contents. Named authorsof copied texts include: Stephen Duck, Richard Savage, Mr Garrick, Mr Marriot, Mr Doddes, MrsBellamy, and John Lockman. A leaf of paper in a 19th-century hand containing a poem to 'Meliora' isenclosed (MS 141/1).

Manuscript volume, in detached boards with marbled covers; undated but apparently early 19thcentury; index at end. The first section is entitled 'Rowallan Manuscripts'. It opens with amanuscript copy of 'The Historie and Descent of the House of Rowallane', a family history publishedin 1825 and compiled from papers written by Sir William Mure sometime before his death in 1657. Therest of the volume consists of songs, epitaphs, sonnets, poems and elegies which may have beentranscribed from manuscripts of the Mure family. The named poems are: 'Love and Ressoune', 'Beautie'sEpitaph', 'Dido and Aeneas', 'The Joy of Tears', 'The Challenge The Reply', and 'The Whigg'sSupplication', the last by Samuel Colvil.

The volume has been in the possession of D. Donaldson, who added several pencil annotations toit, and Thomas Lyle. Enclosed in the volume are two letters to Pinto from members of the ScottishTert Society in 1939 concerning the volume (MS 141/2).

Manuscript volume bound in red leather, compiled between about 1740 and 1791, in the hand of oneunidentified author. It contains poetic songs, epitaphs and sonnets on a variety of subjects. It isnot known whether any of this poetry was composed by the compiler of the volume. Some are identifiedas copies of poems appearing in manuscripts at Westminster Abbey and Queens College Oxford andsonnets of Shakespeare, while others seem inspired by literature and historical works read by thecompiler and events and places that he or she visited. They include poems about love, fortitude,poetry, Bewdly, Sir Richard Greenvile, and cock fighting. The volume also contains the copy of adescription of making tar water by Bishop Berkeley (MS 141/3).

Administrative / Biographical History

Vivian de Sola Pinto was born in 1895 and educated at Christchurch College, Oxford where he readclassics. His studies were interrupted by the First World War. He volunteered for service and foughtin Gallipoli, Sinai, and France, where he became a friend of the English poet, Siegfried Sassoon. Hereturned to Oxford in 1919, and graduated with a first class honours degree in 1921. After workingat the Sorbonne and then in the extra-mural department at University College Nottingham, he wasappointed to the chair of English at Southampton in 1926. He left his post in 1938 to take up thechair in English at Nottingham where he remained until his retirement in 1961. He died on 27 July1969.

Pinto had a wide range of research interests in English literature, with a particularconcentration on the 17th-century Restoration poets. On his appointment at Nottingham in 1938 hetook a strong personal interest in the local writer D.H. Lawrence and was a major influence on thedevelopment of Lawrence studies at Nottingham and the establishment of a collection of Lawrencemanuscripts in the University Library. He invited F.R. Leavis to Nottingham to lecture on Lawrence,and was largely responsible for organising the 1960 first major exhibition of Lawrence works atNottingham.

Pinto's active interests included development of Nottingham's old Playhouse, the establishment ofNottingham University, and the setting up of the University's Department of Fine Art. He was himselfan amateur artist and a regular contributor to annual exhibitions.

His published work reflected his range of interests. An edition of Charles Sedley (1639-1701)appeared in 1928, followed by a biographical sketch and critical study of the works of Peter Sterry(1613-1672) and a portrait of Rochester whose poems he later edited in 1935. Pinto's later workincluded The English Renaissance, Crisis in English Poetry and an edition of thecollected works of Lawrence. In the year of his death was published The City that Shone. Anautobiography. 1895-1922, which had been intended as the first volume of an account of hislife.


No archival arrangement has been necessary.

Access Information

ACCESS: Accessible to all registered readers.

LANGUAGE: English, Latin

Other Finding Aids

This description is the only finding aid available for the collection. Copyright in thedescription belongs to The University of Nottingham.

Separated Material

Conditions Governing Use

REPROGRAPHIC: Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposesonly, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

COPYRIGHT: Permission to make published use of any material from this collection must be soughtin advance in writing from the Keeper of the Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections(email The Department will try to assist in identifying copyright owners but the responsibility for copyright clearance before publication ultimately rests with the reader.

Custodial History

The main body of the collection was given to the University of Nottingham's Department ofManuscripts by Professor Pinto in July 1961.

Related Material

  • The University of Nottingham; Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections: ProfessorPinto's work on D.H. Lawrence led to the acquisition of a number of photographic and manuscriptitems which now form part of the Lawrence Collection. There is also extensive correspondence of hisrelating to the 1960 Nottingham Lawrence exhibition. Reference: La S 2/1
  • The University of Nottingham; Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections: Papers andcorrespondence of Reginald M. Hewitt (1887-1948), Professor of English at University CollegeNottingham, 1910-1953. These papers were collected by Professor Pinto during the preparation of a1955 book about Hewitt. Pinto then gave them to the University. Reference: MS 133