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William A. Speck collection of prints.

Call Number: YCGL MSS 11
Scope and Contents
The William A. Speck Collection of Prints contains portraits, views and illustrations documenting the life, work, and reception of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The collection is housed in 42 boxes, plus numerous broadside folders, and consists of three series: Portraits, Views, and Illustrations. While most of the collection is composed of prints, other formats may also be found, including watercolors, silhouettes, printed ephemera, and a few photographs.

Series I, Portraits is arranged alphabetically by name. Series II, Views is arranged by country, and within that by city. It should be noted that the place names in Series II are those that were in use in the 1920s and 30s, when most of the collection was cataloged, and therefore may not reflect current usage or political divisions.

The Portraits series includes portraits of Goethe and of his associates, but also includes many contemporaries not closely associated with the poet. The Views and Illustrations focus more narrowly on Goethe himself, his life and work, depicting places where Goethe lived or visited, or which he discussed in his works, particularly Weimar, and scenes and characters from Goethe's works, in particular Faust.

In addition to this listing, which was compiled by labeling on the files, a card index exists, which provides access by artist name to many, though probably not all, works encompassed in this collection. These cards also may contain additional information, including such things as names of engraver, place of creation, date of creation, and bibliographic citations. For further information about the card index, consult the appropriate curator.
Conditions Governing Access
The materials are open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
The William A. Speck Collection of Prints is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This collection was built by the library by gift and purchase from various sources. These include a core group of prints collected by William A. Speck and brought to Yale when he accepted the position of curator of the Yale Collection of German Literature; items purchased for the collection with Yale funds by Speck, including approximately 3750 prints from the Berg Collection, or received as gifts during his tenure; and materials acquired since by the library, by gift or purchase.
circa 1750-1850
38.77 Linear Feet ((42 boxes) + 13 broadside drawers)
Related Names
Speck, William A. (William Alfred), 1864-1928
Language of Materials