File NLW MS 22782D. - Letters to Augustus John,

Identity area

Reference code

NLW MS 22782D.


Letters to Augustus John,


  • [?1899]-1961 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

173 ff.

Guarded and filed.

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Gwendolen Mary John (Gwen John) (1876-1939), artist, was born at Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire. She was the sister of the artist Augustus John (1878-1961). Between 1895 and 1898, she was a pupil at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, alongside her brother. During her time at the school she befriended other female artists, including Ursula Tyrwhitt, and Ida Nettleship, who later married Augustus John. She studied in Paris at the Academie Carmen in 1898, before moving back to England, living in London until 1904, when she returned to France with her friend Dorothy 'Dorelia' McNeill. She moved back to Paris and remained in France for most of the rest of her life. The majority of her paintings were of women or girls, and her work was exhibited in Paris, London and New York. During her time in Paris she met the sculptor Auguste Rodin, and in 1910, the American art collector John Quinn became a patron of her work. Gwen John died in Dieppe, France, in 1939. Edwin John (1905-1978), her nephew, the son of Augustus John, was the chief executor of her will. A memorial exhibition of Gwen John's work was held at the Matthiesen Gallery, London, in 1946.

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Biographical history

Name of creator


Biographical history

Prof. Gwyn Jones (1907-1999), scholar, novelist and short-story writer, was born on 27 May 1907 in Blackwood, Monmouthshire. He was educated at Tredegar County School and later studied at University College, Cardiff, where he graduated in English in 1927. He was awarded an MA degree for a thesis on the Icelandic Sagas in 1929. During the same year he was appointed to a teaching post at Wigan, later moving to Manchester. His first publications, Four Icelandic Sagas and Richard Savage, appeared in 1935, the year in which he moved back to Cardiff as a lecturer in the English Department. In 1940 he was appointed Professor of English at Aberystwyth, where he stayed until 1964, when he was appointed to the Chair of English at Cardiff. He remained there until his retirement in 1975. He was a major figure in Anglo-Welsh literature. He founded, with Creighton Griffiths, the monthly magazine The Welsh Review which appeared, under his editorship, from February to November 1939. He edited some volumes of Welsh short stories and the Oxford Book of Welsh Verse in English (1977). He also wrote three novels. Together with Thomas Jones, the medievalist, he prepared a new translation of the Mabinogi which was first published in 1948. He received many honours, including the Order of the Falcon by the President of Iceland, and was a Commander of the British Empire.

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Name of creator

Biographical history

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Scope and content

Over one hundred and fifteen letters, [?1899]-1961, to Augustus John from various correspondents (surnames J-K), including Gwen John (5) [c. 1910]-[1925], Ida John (née Nettleship) (20) [?1899]-[1907], Professor Gwyn Jones (1) 1950, James Joyce (1) [1933], Dame Laura Knight (1) 1961, and Oskar Kokoschka (1) 1938.

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Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to abide by the conditions noted on the 'Modern papers - data protection' form issued with their readers' tickets.

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Usual copyright laws apply.

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Finding aids

The contents of NLW MSS 21701-22852 are indexed in greater detail in Handlist of Manuscripts in the National Library of Wales, vol. 8 (Aberystwyth, 1999).

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Preferred citation: NLW MS 22782D.

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  • Text: NLW MS 22782D.