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Sheila and Terry Meyers Collection of Swinburneiana

Identifier: MS 00291

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

Collection provides insight into the life of Algernon Charles Swinburne and his contemporaries, including Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Frederick Sandys, Theodore Watts-Dunton, William Morris, Edward Burne-Jones, Lucy Madox Brown, William Michael Rossetti, and William Sharp. Materials include handwritten letter and autograph of Queen Victoria; Vanity Fair caricature of Swinburne by Carlo Pelligrini, pseudonym Ape; letters from siblings Christina, William Michael and Dante Gabriel Rossetti; Thomas Woolner; Matilde and Karl Blinde; Frederic Harrison; Alfred, Lord Tennyson, and John Ruskin; and two original art works of Swinburne


  • Creation: 1854-1932


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to all researchers. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, such as the Virginia Public Records Act (Code of Virginia. § 42.1-76-91); and the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (Code of Virginia § 2.2-3705.5). Confidential material may include, but is not limited to, educational, medical, and personnel records. If sensitive material is found in this collection, please contact a staff member immediately. The disclosure of personally identifiable information pertaining to a living individual may have legal consequences for which the College of William and Mary assumes no responsibility.

Conditions Governing Use

Before publishing quotations or excerpts from any materials, permission must be obtained from the Curator of Manuscripts and Rare Books, and the holder of the copyright, if not Swem Library.

Biographical / Historical

Algernon Charles Swinburne was an English writer of poetry, drama, novels and criticism. Educated at Eton and Balliol College, Oxford, Swinburne interacted closely with his contemporaries in the Pre-Raphaelite circle, including Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones. His publications include Poems and Ballads (1866), Essays and Studies (1875); monographs on William Shakespeare, Ben Johnson, Victor Hugo, William Blake, Percy Shelley and Charles Baudelaire; and a posthumously published novel, Lesbia Brandon. Swinburne’s work is known for its rebellion against Victorian mores, and he was nominated multiple times for the Nobel Prize for Literature. In the late 1870s, he retired to The Pines, in Putney, London, at the intervention of his friend Theodore Watts-Dunton. Swinburne died at The Pines in 1909.


2.25 Linear Feet




Collection is arranged into four series: Correspondence, Manuscripts, Original Art, and Miscellaneous. The first three series are arranged in alphabetical order by creator's (letter writer, artist, author) last name, with chronological order used when there are multiple items in the same folder from the same creator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Sheila Meyers is William & Mary class of 1978, and her husband, Terry L. Meyers, William & Mary Chancellor Professor of English, Emeritus.

Physical Description

Box 2 is heavy. Handle and/or lift carefully.

Guide to the Sheila and Terry Meyers Collection of Swinburneiana
Mariaelena DiBenigno, Special Collection Research Center staff.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center Repository