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Papers of William Ross Hardie (1862-1916)


Biographical note

b. Jan. 6 1862. Son of a tailor. Educated at Edinburgh University and Balliol (1880-84). Won the Gaisford Verse and Prose Prizes 1882, Chancellor's Prize for Latin verse 1883. Fellow of Balliol 1884-1895. Classics Moderator 1891, 1892, 1895. Junior Proctor 1893-4. Professor of Humanity, Edinburgh University, from 1895. m. Isabella Watt Stevenson in 1901. Died May 3 1916. Two of his sons, W.F.R. Hardie (Balliol 1920) and C.G. Hardie (1924, Fellow and Tutor in Classics 1930-2), attended Balliol.

See also the Balliol College Register.

Provenance and Arrangement

The papers were presented to Balliol by one of W.R. Hardie's sons, Colin G. Hardie (see above).

The material in sections I and II in this list was given in the 1970s; the Balliol College Record notes the gift of the letters from WRH to Mackail (II/1) in 1974. The remaining papers (sections III-V), given through Dr. Jasper Griffin, Fellow of Balliol, were received in 1991.

In listing, it was decided to leave the original deposit separate from the later acquisition: it relates mostly to WRH's work on Aristotle. The papers given in 1991 were re-arranged, since the order in which they arrived in the library did not always seem to reflect the way WRH might have created his papers. For instance the four interleaved texts (V/3 - V/6) used by WRH were not all placed together in the box in which the papers arrived in the Library, and the Latin and Greek compositions were scattered through the box, although the University prize-winning compositions which had been printed were in a bundle, and the lectures by WRH were also together.

Therefore the 1991 material was to some extent sorted to produce three more sections (III - V): biographical, and material relating to the creation and acquisition by Balliol of the papers; material produced by WRH's translations and compositions in Latin and Greek; and material created by WRH's other academic activities, for example articles on classical subjects written by him, and some teaching material.

The first donation was listed by Dr. P.A. Bulloch. The papers given in 1991 were listed by Rachel Kemsley (Modern Manuscripts Assistant) in January 1995.

Bibliography of WRH's books

(see also: British Museum General Catalogue for Printed Books to 1955, for articles, etc).

  • Lectures on Classical Subjects (1903). A collection of his separate pamphlets.
  • Latin Prose Composition (1908). 2 vols. Pt. I: Notes on Grammar, Style and Idiom. Pt. II: English passages for translation into Latin.
  • Silvulae Academicae. Verses and verse translation (1912).
  • Res Metrica. An introduction to the study of Greek and Roman versification (1920 - published posthumously).
  • (n.b. Balliol College Library holds copies of Lectures on Classical Subjects and Res Metrica...)
  • Other material relating to W.R. Hardie in the Library:
  • There is a small amount of material in the Modern Manuscript Collections:
  • The Jowett collection. See the index to the catalogue of the collection.
  • The J.L. Strachan-Davidson papers. See the index to the catalogue.

The Library also holds another pamphlet by WRH, What is metre and how should it be taught?, stored in Balliol Pamphlets.

Abbreviations used

ALS = autograph letter(s) signed (in the hand of the author).

CGH= Colin Graham Hardie, one of William Ross Hardie's sons.

WRH= William Ross Hardie

List of the papers

[BOX 1]


I/1Markbook: scholarships 1889-1894.

I/2Markbook. 1891-1895. Various loose inserts are placed between the pages.


II/1Bundle of ALS, 1891-96, from WRH to J.W. Mackail (Balliol 1878-84, Fellow 1882-91, Hon. Fellow 1922), housed in an envelope which also contains a note on their provenance.

II/2Printed edition of Aristotle's De Poetica (1780).

II/3Printed edition of Vahlen's Notes on Aristotle's Poetica.

II/4MS notes by WRH. 5 leaves.

II/5ALS from Colin Hardie to Mr. [Vincent] Quinn (Librarian of Balliol) dated 19th August 1973.

II/6Interleaved bound copy of Vahlen's text of Aristotle's De Arte Poetica, with MS notes by WRH. Inside the front cover there is an ALS (dated [18]95) to Hardie from J.W. Mackail (2 leaves).

[BOX 2]

II/7Interleaved bound copy of Aristotle's De Arte Poetica (1878), belonging to J.W. Mackail, with MS notes by him.

II/8 Box file labelled "Aristotelis Poetica", containing:

II/8/1a and II/8/1b2 pamphlets in Latin entitled Aristotelis DE ARTE POETICA liber recensuit Guilelmus Christ (1878), one of which has J.M. Mackail's name written on it.

II/8/2 Notes (MS) on Aristotle's Poetics, with the name of D.C. MacGregor (Fellow of Balliol 1919-39) on the front, but in J.W. Mackail's hand.


[BOX 3]

III/1ALS from Colin Hardie to Dr. Jasper Griffin, dated 7 October 1991, with its original envelope, including some comments on the material belonging to his father which he was donating to Balliol.

III/2MS of two passages of Latin hexameters in WRH's hand. Enclosed with the letter at III/1, which refers to it near the end. (1 leaf).

III/3ALS from Colin Hardie to Dr. Jasper Griffin, dated 18 October 1991. Concerning the donation of WRH's papers to Balliol.

III/4MS list of WRH's books in CGH's hand, mentioned in the letter at III/3.

III/5MS biographical notes on WRH in CGH's hand.

(Readers should note that the letters at III/1 and III/3 contain some useful background information on WRH and his writings, on the contents and provenance of the material contained in this collection.)


IV/1MS, in the hand of CGH: an explanatory passage on some Latin elegiac verses (IV/3) written in 1899 by WRH for Miss. Elizabeth Stevenson (who was his future wife's sister).

IV/2ALS from WRH to Miss Stevenson dated Dec. 28th [18]99, which accompanied a book he was sending to her. (1 leaf).

IV/3MS of Latin verses, in the hand of WRH (see IV/1 for more information). (1 leaf).

(IV/1, IV/2 and IV/3 are associated material).

IV/4Printed Latin verses by WRH, labelled "WRH 1912 Verses on the Bodleian Library" in CGH's hand. (1 leaf).

IV/5MS entitled "A Version of Prof. W.R. Hardie's exquisite Valediction ad Graeciam Scriptoresque Graecos". Written in English, dated 20 Oct. 1895, and signed Reginald W. [Macan?] (possibly Reginald Walter Macan, Fellow (from 1884) and Tutor in Literae Humaniores at University College).

IV/6Printed Latin verses by WRH, entitled "In cortinam aeream a discipulis donatum", dated 1901. Explanatory note in CGH's hand reads "Congratulations on his marriage in form of a silver cup inscribed...". 1 leaf.

IV/7Envelope containing:

Photocopies of the five Latin and 2 Greek verses contributed by WRH to Nova Anthologia Oxonienses, ed. Robinson Ellis and A.D. Godley (1899). The verses translated into Latin were by: Thackeray, Addison, Meredith, Tennyson, Jonson. Those into Greek were by: Shelley and Arnold.

Another printed copy of IV/6, but without any MS annotations.

IV/8MS of Greek in WRH's hand, part of Milton's Samson Agonistes, translated by WRH. n.d. 1 leaf.

IV/9MS of English and Latin verses in WRH's hand. Labelled in CGH's hand: "Latin version of [Charles] Tennyson" (elder brother of Alfred), by WRH. n.d. 1 leaf.

IV/10MS of biographical notes on Charles Tennyson in CGH's hand. 1 leaf.

4 printed pamphlets (IV/11 - IV/14), in a bundle:

IV/11"Gaisford Prize - Greek verse. Shakespeare, Twelfth Night, Act II, Scene V translated into comic iambics, by W.R. Hardie..." (1882).

IV/12" Cancellari Praemio Donatum de Scientia quae dicitur Electrica carmen Latinum scripsit Gul. R. Hardie, coll. Ball. scholar." (1883).

IV/13"Gaisford Prize - Greek prose. A Platonic dialogue on the difference between oratory and poetry. By W.R. Hardie..." (1882).

(n.b. The Library has other copies of IV/12 and IV/13; see WRH's entries in the pre-1962 Balliol Library catalogue.)

IV/14"Gaisford Greek Prose 1922 A Lucianic Dialogue between Socrates in Hades and certain men of the present day, who are conducted thither by Pollux on one of his annual excursions By W.F.R. Hardie..." The "Dialogi Personae" of this includes D. Lloyd George, E. de Valera and Trotsky. The author of this prize-winning work, William Francis Ross Hardie, WRH's eldest son, was up at Balliol as an undergraduate at this time.

IV/15Printed pamphlet: "Oratio Procuratoria habita in domo magnae convocationis...procuratoribus Arturo Hassall Ex Aede Christi Gulielmo Ross Hardie E Collegio Balliolensi" (1894). Report by the Proctors, annotated with MS explanatory notes by WRH.

(n.b. WRH was Junior Proctor 1893-4.)


V/1MS of an essay by WRH: "A criticism of criteria. Observations on the evidence afforded by metre and diction for the date of Latin poems. 1. Evidence from versification." (22 leaves). This essay on Latin versification was, according to the letter at III/3, never published.

V/2Photocopy of a transcript of WRH's essay on Latin versification.

Interleaved bound copies of 4 books, with extensive MS annotations, marginalia and notes in WRH's hand:

V/3Lucretius, De Rerum Natura (Book V).

V/4Virgil, Georgicon (Book II). Also contains various loose inserts at the back: notes in WRH's hand, on Virgil, for teaching, etc.

V/5Catullus, Carmina. Also contains miscellaneous loose notes: at the front, on teaching; at the back, various, in English and Latin.

V/6Virgil, Aeneidos (Book VIII). Also contains various loose inserts (mostly MS in WRH's hand, some printed): at the front, 2 papers for University of Edinburgh Latin classes, with WRH's MS annotations: near the back, notes for teaching, a passage on "Pastoral Poetry" in WRH's hand, notes for lectures, another University of Edinburgh paper for a Latin class, notes on metrical terms and symbols, notes on Catullus, etc.

According to the letter at III/3, these 4 books were used by WRH in the preparation of his unpublished essay on Latin versification (see V/1 and V/2).

V/7Offprint of WRH's article on "The Culex", from The Classical Quarterly vol. XIV, no. 1, Jan. 1920. Inside the front cover is 1 leaf of notes in WRH's hand, on classical authors.

(n.b. The Library also has a copy of the periodical with this article in it.)

V/8Offprint of WRH's article "On some non-metrical arguments bearing on the date of the Ciris", from The Journal of Philology vol. XXX (n.d.).

V/9MS of an essay by WRH, "Pseudepigraphica (Treatises of doubtful authorship)". Dated 1906 in the hand of CGH. 19 leaves.

V/10MS of an essay in the hand of WRH, "Lex Proæmiorum". 7 leaves.

V/11MS of pp. 14-22, and one un-numbered p., of an essay by WRH. The title at the top of p.14 is: "What was new in Virgil and Horace?" 10 leaves.

7 printed lectures by WRH (all given after he had moved to Edinburgh to become Professor of Humanity in 1895):

V/12"The Character and Genius of the Roman People. An Inaugural Address. Delivered at Edinburgh on the 15th October 1895 by W.R. Hardie..."

V/13"The Aims and Methods of Classical Study. An Introductory Lecture. By W.R. Hardie...1896."

V/14"Literary Criticism at Rome. An Introductory Lecture by W.R. Hardie...1897."

V/15"A Sketch of the Revival and Progress of Classical Studies in Europe. An Introductory Lecture by W.R. Hardie...1898."

V/16"The Feeling for Nature in the Greek and Roman Poets. An Introductory Lecture by W.R. Hardie...1899."

V/17"The Beliefs of the Greeks and Romans concerning a life after death. A Lecture introductory to the Study of Aeneid VI. By W.R. Hardie...1900."

V/18"The Supernatural in Ancient Poetry and Story. A lecture...1901. By W.R. Hardie..."

- Dr PA Bulloch, Rachel Kemsley.

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