Papers of Algernon Charles Swinburne
Born in London 5 April 1837; eldest son of Admiral Charles Henry Swinburne.
Education : Eton . Balliol Hilary 1856-1859; Taylorian Scholar 1858; 2nd Classical Moderations 1858; member of "Old Mortality Society". Left Balliol in 1859 (apparently Benjamin Jowett thought it would be best if he left Oxford for a while); read history at Navestock with William Stubbs (1825-1901, historian and bishop, Honorary Fellow of Balliol; see the D.N.B.), Trinity term 1859. Did not take a degree. Despite his early departure from Balliol and his subsequent unorthodox lifestyle, he remained on good terms with Jowett in later life: he sometimes joined Jowett on his reading parties and visited him at Malvern.
Career Poet. Publications: see the D.N.B.
Died 10 April 1909.
For further information :
Balliol College Register 1833-1933.
The Dictionary of National Biography.
R.A.B. Mynors, Catalogue of the Manuscripts of Balliol College Oxford (1968): MSS 415-417, 421.
Balliol has a portrait of Swinburne by William Bell Scott (1860); see John Jones, The Portraits of Balliol College: A Catalogue (1990).
In the Modern Manuscripts collections, see the Jowett papers.
Lang - Balliol corresponding numbers:
The 20th letter to Messrs A&C Black is no. 1363A in Lang and 15 in the Balliol fascicule.
Letter from Swinburne, 1 May 1887, to Mr Cook, tipped into the front of Balliol’s copy of the pamphlet Swinburne AC: A Record of Friendship. London: TJ Wise, 1910. Images here Also tipped in at the back of this pamphlet, a letter from DG Rossetti to ‘ Watts’ (probably Theodore Watts-Dunton). Both letters probably inserted by Wise.
Jowett Papers, Box E, item K. Letter from Swinburne to Jowett, 24 July 1892.
Other related material
‘Undergraduate Papers.’ The printed journal of the Old Mortality Society (1857-1858); one of only seven copies. Includes contributions by Swinburne: ‘The early English dramatists,’ ‘Queen Yseult,’ ‘The Monomaniac’s tragey,’ ‘Church Imperialism.’ Given by Mrs Madan 1963.
Photocopies of 4 University certificates (matriculation and examinations): 24 Jan 1856, 10 Dec 1856, 5 June 1858, 5 May 1860. Given by JS Mayfield 1945.
Copy of Lucan: Pharsalia; recognovit... JA Amar. Paris: Lefevre, 1882. Swinburne’s ownership inscription and date on flyleaf, and his bookplate inside front cover. Given by Miss Elaine Austin in 1983.
For a list of Swinburne’s published works in Balliol Library, see Wise, TJ. A bibliography of the writings in prose and verse of Algernon Charles Swinburne. London: Richard Clay, 1919-1920. 2 vols. Balliol’s copy has annotations by Roger Mynors concerning some of the items in the collection.
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