Menu

Guide to the Sir Leslie Stephen Papers, 1861-1959 (bulk 1866-1891)

Abstract

British author, philosopher, and first editor of the Dictionary of National Biography.

Chiefly correspondence between Stephen and his first wife, Harriet Marian ("Minny") Thackeray, daughter of William Makepeace Thackeray, during their courtship and marriage. Several letters written to family members during the Stephen's honeymoon and later sojourns in Switzeralnd were illustrated with drawings by both. Includes letters from other relatives and letters of condolence at Minny's death. In a few letters to his second wife, Julia Duckworth Stephen, Stephen mentions their children "Nessa and Ginia" (Vanessa Bell and Virginia Woolf). Five letters from Stephen to Sir Henry John Newbolt concern Newbolt's poetry. Includes 21 manuscript articles written by Stephen for CORNHILL MAGAZINE while Thackeray was editor. Also contains a small number of printed articles and a reproduction of Stephen's portrait by G. F. Watts.

Descriptive Summary

Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Creator
Stephen, Leslie, Sir, 1832-1904.
Title
Sir Leslie Stephen papers 1861-1959 (bulk 1866-1891)
Language of Material
English
Extent
1.0 Linear Feet, 298 Items
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

Chiefly family correspondence and manuscripts of articles by Sir Leslie Stephen (1832-1904), author, philosopher, and first editor of the Dictionary of National Biography. Included are the letters of his first wife, Harriet Marian (Thackeray) Stephen, daughter of William Makepeace Thackeray, and of his second wife, Julia Prinsep (Jackson) Duckworth Stephen, whose children included Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell. Correspondence discusses visits to Cambridge, England, by Stephen in 1866, and 1869; almost yearly tours of Switzerland, especially the Alps, by Sir Leslie and Harriet Marian (Thackeray) Stephen after their marriage in 1867 until her death in 1875; a tour of America in 1868, where they met James Russell Lowell, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Charles Sumner, and Elizabeth H. Putnam; meetings with George Otto Trevelyan, Henry Fawcett, Matthew Arnold, William Ernest Henley, and Alfred Tennyson; Stephen's opinion of a novel by Millicent Fawcett; and Stephen's biography of Henry Fawcett, the proceeds from his writings, and his work on the Dictionary of National Biography. Also included are a poem by Sir Henry Taylor written in 1864; report, 1895, of a committee for the establishment of a memorial to Thomas Henry Huxley; clipping, 1898, of a congratulatory letter to George Meredith on his seventieth birthday, with a note on Meredith by Stephen; report, 1900, concerning a memorial for Henry Sidgwick; several pages from the Proceedings of the Alpine Club, 1899, relating to the election of James Bryce as president, pages from The Cambridge Review, 1900, containing statements about James Porter, former master of St. Peter's College, Cambridge; proofs or printed copies of eight of Stephen's magazine articles; and twentyone manuscripts of articles by Stephen.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

Correspondence, 1861-1866
Box 1
Correspondence, 1867
Box 1
Correspondence, 1868-1869
Box 1
Correspondence, 1870
Box 1
Correspondence, 1871-1872
Box 1
Correspondence, 1873-1874
Box 1
Correspondence, 1875
Box 1
Correspondence, 1876-1959, undated
Box 1
Printed Material, 1892-1966, undated
Box 1
Pictures
Box 1
Manuscript Articles - Author's Introductory Note
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Another View
Box 2
Manuscript Article: A Cynic's Apology
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Useless Knowledge
Box 2
Manuscript Article: The Decay of Murder
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Heroes and Valets
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Idolatry
Box 2
Manuscript Article: The Late Lord Lytton as a Novelist
Box 2
Manuscript Article: National Antipathies
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Oratory
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Our Rulers
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Senior Wranglers
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Social Slavery
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Literary Exhaustion
Box 2
Manuscript Article: The Decay of Literature
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Thoughts of an Outsider: Public Schools
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Thoughts of an Outsider: Public Schools Again
Box 2
Manuscript Article: The Uses of Fools
Box 2
Manuscript Article: The Study of English Literature
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Seventy-Six
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Untitled
Box 2
Manuscript Article: Vacations
Box 2

Historical Note

British author, philosopher, and first editor of the Dictionary of National Biography.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Sir Leslie Stephen Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The Sir Leslie Stephen Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1964.

Processing Information

Processed by Kimberly Sims, May 2011

Encoded by Kimberly Sims, June 2011

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.