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Thomas Carlyle collection

Call Number: GEN MSS 677
Scope and Contents

The Thomas Carlyle Collection is a mixed-provenance collection of material by and about Thomas Carlyle. Material includes writings, notes, maps, and correspondence that document Carlyle's research on German history and literature and on Oliver Cromwell, among other topics. The bulk of the papers relate to Carlyle's History of Friedrich II of Prussia, called Frederick the Great and include maps, research notes, correspondence, drafts, and corrected proofs. Notes by Carlyle's assistant Joseph Neuberg (d. 1867) reveal the extent and character of Neuberg's contributions to the work. There is also a substantial amount of material related to Oliver Cromwell's Letters and Speeches, including an annotated three-volume set of the printed work that was used to prepare a revised edition, and several folders of contributions by various correspondents. Other papers include drafts of essays and a book-length work on the history of German literature, letters to and from Carlyle about diverse aspects of his life and work, and photographs of Carlyle and his wife Jane Welsh Carlyle. Of particular interest are holograph drafts of Past and Present and fragments of Chartism.

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Thomas Carlyle Collection 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

Acquired by gift and purchase from various sources, as noted on individual folders or on the catalog cards in Folder 1. A large portion of the papers was purchased at Sotheby's (lot 199) on the A.H. Childs Fund, 1932.


Arrangement of the Thomas Carlyle Collection reflects the existing organization in 2009.

circa 1750-1951
Majority of material found within 1827 - 1882
7.17 Linear Feet ((24 boxes) + 1 broadside)
Related Names
Carlyle, Thomas, 1795-1881
Neuberg, Joseph, 1806-1867
Language of Materials