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Wilde (Oscar) and his Literary Circle Collection: Forgeries
MS. Wilde Forgeries  
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Table of contents What's This?

 

Forgeries from "Andre Gide" and Dorian Hope Series 1. 1920-1957

Physical Description: .83 Linear Feet2 boxes

Provenance

Clark Library purchase, 1957 from G.F. Sims catalog 35 (MS.1957.007). Purchased by Sims from Hodges Figgis and Co. catalog 10 (issued in 1953).

Scope and Contents

Contains forgeries offered for sale to William Figgis of Dublin booksellers Hodges Figgis in 1921, as well as correspondence related to the forgeries from 1921-1957. Forged works include alleged correspondence from Wilde as well as draft manuscripts of his literary and dramatic work. Letters include correspondence from the fake Andre Gide as well as the real Andre Gide, various booksellers (Maggs, Davis and Orioli, Gabriel Wells), Christopher Millard, and Vyvyan Holland. Some supplementary published material from the 1950s regarding the collection is also included.

Arrangement

Materials are described in three separate subseries: Subseries 1.1. Letters from "Oscar Wilde" ; Subseries 1.2. Manuscripts ; and Subseries 1.3. Correspondence regarding collection. Materials are physically arranged in the order in which they are described in Sims Catalog 35.

Existence and Location of Copies

Microfilm available: Wilde 21-2

Original Call Number

Originally cataloged as W6721M C697 1887 1900 Boxed.

Historical Note

This series contains forged works by Oscar Wilde and offered for sale by a person (or persons) posing as Andre Gide and his agent Dorian Hope. Though these forgeries have been attributed to Fabian Lloyd, Wilde's nephew by marriage, it is highly unlikely that Lloyd was involved, as he is thought to have died at sea in 1920. The materials collected here were purchased by William Figgis of Dublin booksellers Hodges Figgis and Co. He sold 2 items to fellow booksellers Davis and Orioli who had doubts about their authenticity and returned them to Figgis. This prompted Figgis to arrange a meeting with "Andre Gide" in Paris, where he was met not by Gide but by his alleged agent Dorian Hope. After meeting Hope, he set out to visit the real Andre Gide, who was deeply upset and denied any knowledge of such Wilde manuscripts. Figgis later sought the help of Wilde expert Christopher Millard, who at first believed the manuscripts were all genuine, though he quickly changed his mind.
In 1953, Hodges Figgis offered the "Wilde"-"Gide" material for sale in their catalog number 10 (lot 3497).
 

Letters from "Oscar Wilde" Subseries 1.1.

Physical Description: Many of these letters originally housed together in one envelope from Hodges, Figgis. Envelope now in Box 1/Folder 12.
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 2

"Oscar Wilde" to Andre Gide 189-? 16 November

Physical Description: 4 pages. Sims catalogue no. 1
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 3

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear Sir" 1895 April 11

Physical Description: 1 page. Sims catalogue no. 2
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 4

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" undated

Physical Description: 1 page. Sims catalogue no. 3.
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 5

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" undated

Physical Description: 2 pages. Sims catalogue no. 4
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 7

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" 1894 January 28

Physical Description: 3 pages. Regarding a review in the Pall Mall Gazette. Sims catalogue no. 6
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 6

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear Sir" undated

Physical Description: 2 pages. Sims catalogue no. 5
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 8

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" 1895 January 3

Physical Description: 3 pages. Sims catalogue no. 7
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 9

"Oscar Wilde" to "dear friend" undated

Physical Description: 1 page. Sims catalogue no. 8
Mixed Materials 1, folder 10

"Oscar Wilde" to "mon cher frere" 18--? May 3

Physical Description: 3 pages. Supposedly written from "Hotel d'Alsace": "The doctor tells me I am better today..." Sims catalogue no. 9
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 11

"Oscar Wilde" to Octave Mirbeau 18--? October 29

Physical Description: 4 pages. Sims catalogue no. 10
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 13

2 visiting cards with inscriptions by "Wilde"

Physical Description: Inscriptions in pencil. Sims catalog no. 11
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 14

Reproduction of Wilde photograph and negative with forged inscription 1882

Physical Description: Sims catalogue no. 12
Mixed Materials 1, folder 16

"Oscar Wilde" inscription on a brochure for Robert B. Douglas's Life and times of Madame du Barry (Leonard Smiths, 1896) 1896?

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 15
Books PR5819 .P613Fr 1895* c.2

Inscription to "L.J." in a copy of Le portrait de Dorian Gray (traduit de l'anglais), (Paris, Albert Savine, 1895)

Physical Description: Bound in original wrappers. Catalog record in UCLA Library Catalog.  Sims catalog no. 14
 

Manuscripts Subseries 1.2.

Mixed Materials 1, Folder 15

Several drafts of poem "Passion digs a grave for love"

Physical Description: 6 pages, in purple ink. Sims catalog no. 13
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 17

"Mr. Swinburne's poems and ballads (3rd series)"

Physical Description: 10 pages, in purple ink with numerous corrections and pencilled heading.
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 18

Lord Arthur Savile's Crime

Physical Description: 66 leaves. Written in black ink and pencil with corrections in purple. Housing from Hodges Figgis in Box 1/Folder 19. Sims catalogue no. 17
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 20

The Ballad of Reading Gaol

Physical Description: 42 leaves. In purple ink with corrections and with an inscription to Octave Mirabeau on the head of the text. Sims catalog no. 18.
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 21

The Importance of Being Earnest

Physical Description: 78 pages. Incomplete; written in black ink. Sims catalog no. 19
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 22

The Importance of Being Earnest, Act II

Physical Description: 67 pages. Written in purple ink. Sims catalog no. 20
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 23

First and last verses of The Sphinx

Physical Description: 2 sheets, in pencil. Sims catalog no. 21
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 24

Fragments of 2 poems

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

1 page, in black ink.
Sims catalog no. 22
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 25

The Nightingale and the Rose

Physical Description: 6 leaves. Sims catalogue no. 23
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 26

The Sphinx Without a Secret

Physical Description: 20 pages, in purple ink. Sims catalog no. 24
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 27

The Decay of Lying

Physical Description: 10 leaves. Written in black and purple ink. Sims catalogue no. 25
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 28-29

A Woman of No Importance

Physical Description: 168 leaves. Written in black ink with pencil notes. Booksellers' original housings in Box 1/Folder 30. Sims catalogue no. 26
 

Letters regarding collection Subseries 1.3.

Physical Description: Housing from 1920s bookseller letters in Box 2/Folder 13.
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 1

"Andre Gide" to William Figgis 1921-1922

Physical Description: 13 letters from "Gide" and carbon copies of 2 letters from Figgis to "Gide." Sims Catalogue no. 27
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 2

David Rice to William Figgis 1921

Physical Description: 2 letters. Sims catalog no. 28
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 3

Maggs Bros. to William Figgis 1921

Physical Description: 2 letters and a telegram. Sims catalog no. 29
Mixed Materials 1, Folder 4

Gabriel Wells to Davis and Orioli 1922

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 30
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 5

Davis and Orioli to William Figgis, with receipt for return 1922

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 31
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 6

C. Frederic Harrison (Brentano's Paris) to William Figgis 1921-1922

Physical Description: 14 letters. Sims catalogue no. 32
Books PR5823 .G453o *

Andre Gide, Oscar Wilde : in memoriam (Paris: Mercure de France, 1910)

Physical Description: Copy of book presented to William Figgis by "Andre Gide." Cataloged in UCLA Library Catalog.  Sims catalog no. 33
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 7

Andre Gide to William Figgis 1922 January 9

Physical Description: with original envelope. Sims catalogue no. 34
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 8

Andre Gide to C. Frederic Harrison 1922 January 5

Physical Description: MISSING AS OF 8/20/2014 Sims catalog no. 35
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 10

"Wilde Mss.," typed essay by William Figgis 192-?

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 37
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 9

Christopher Millard to William Figgis 1922-1926

Physical Description: 15 letters. Sims catalogue no. 36
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 11

Vyvyan Holland to William Figgis 1955

Physical Description: 3 letters. Sims catalogue no. 38
Mixed Materials 2, Folder 12

Dudley Edwards to William Figgis 1954

Mixed Materials 2, Folder 14

Dudley Edwards, "The Wilde goose chase," The Amateur Book Collector, Vol. VII, no. 5 (1957) 1957

Mixed Materials 2, Folder 15

"The 'Wonderful Forgeries,'" UCLA Librarian, volume 10, no. 25 (1957 September 6)

Mixed Materials 2, Folder 16

Hodges Figgis and Co. Ltd., Catalog 10 (New Series) 1953

Mixed Materials 1, folder 1

G.F. Sims Catalogue 35

 

Forgeries from "Pierre Louÿs" Series 2. 1920-1922

General

Originally cataloged as W6721M2 S171 [ca. 1921] Boxed

Custodial History

Documents collected in this series are photocopies of material held by Maggs Bros. antiquarian booksellers in London. In 1921, they were approached by a figure posing as Pierre Louys who offered them several manuscripts purported to be by Oscar Wilde. This archive comprises photocopies of the forged documents as well as correspondence between Maggs and the forgers.
Mixed Materials 3, Folder 1

Salome

Mixed Materials 3, Folder 2

Correspondence between Maggs Bros. and "Pierre Louys" 1921

Mixed Materials 3, Folder 3

Forged correspondence, poems and other materials 1921?

 

Mrs. Chan-Toon and "Who Wrote 'For the Love of the King'?" Series 3. 1908-1926

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquired from G.F. Sims, 1957 (MS.1957.008).

Scope and Contents

This series contains material collected by Christopher Millard in relation to the forged Oscar Wilde play For the love of the king, and the libel trial Methuen and Co. v. Millard (1926). Millard's extensive dossier on the trial and on Mrs. Chan-Toon, the forger of the play, contains correspondence, legal documents, and news clippings as well as other materials.
Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 1

Methuen & Co. Ltd. v. Millard 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 2

John Gilmorton, "A Literary Hoax?" The Outlook 1925 August 8

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 3

"Parrot in Court" and photo of Mrs. Chan-Toon, Daily Sketch 1926 January 6

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 4

Literary Intelligence typescript 1925 September 3

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 5

Correspondence file of incoming and outgoing letters between Millard and various parties 1925 August 8

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, folder 6

"Who wrote 'For the love of the king'?" circular with letter from Millard 1925?

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 7

Further list of documents in plaintiffs' possession 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 8

Field Roscoe to Cann Jackson & Cann 1926 October 13

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 9

CSM to LJ memo 1926 November 8

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, folder 10

CSM to LJ memo 1926 August 11

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 11

Translation of Henry D. Davray, "Les apocryphes d'Oscar Wilde," Mercure de France 1926 March 1

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 12

Clipping from Mercure de France 1926 February 1

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 13

Les apocryphes d'Oscar Wilde, Part II, Mercure de France 1926 March 1

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 14

Les apocryphes d'Oscar Wilde, part I 1926 October 1

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 15

2 pages of questions for A.J.A. Symons undated

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 16

List of contacts and addresses undated

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 17

The evening standard 1926 May 1

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 18

Methuen and Co. Ltd v. Millard pamphlet 1926 December 19

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 19

List of donations to Millard 1926?

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 20

Letter from Mabel Violet Wanliss to Christopher Millard 1926 November 11

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 21

Letter from W. Brown to Millard 1926 November 19

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 22

Letter from H.W. Fowler to Millard 1926 October 22

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 23

Note from LJ to CSM 1926 October 22

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 24

Methuen v. Millard, Plaintiffs' departmental memoranda 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 25

Methuen v. Millard, transcripts and other court documents 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 26

Letter from Curtis Brown Ltd. to CSM 1926 April 21

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 27

The evening standard 1926 March 19

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 28

Daily Herald 1926 March 13

Books M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 29

Letter from Parker Garrett and Co. to Millard regarding unauthorized Wilde materials 1911 November 7

Books M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 30

Testimony from A.J.A. Symons 1926?

Books M645Z W6286 Box 1, Folder 31

Draft of request for donations on behalf of Millard 1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 1

Letters from Werner Laurie to Millard 1922-1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 2

Methuen v. Millard, Affadavit as to documents by defendant 1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 3

Methuen v. Millard, Notice of application 1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 4

Methuen v. Millard, Defence 1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 5

Letter from Millard to C. Jackson 1926 May 6

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 6

Letter from Cann Jackson Cann? to Field Roscoe? 1926?

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 7

Millard formal statement on case 1926?

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 8

Postcard from OB to Millard 1926 April 29

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 9

Letter from A. Ross? to Millard 1920 April 28

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 10

Letter from The times to Millard 1925 September 6

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 11

Letter from Reginald Turner to Millard 192-? December 10

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 12

Letter from Daily herald to Millard 1926 May 1

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 13

Letter from Methuen to Millard 1913 November 28

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 14

Letter from Methuen to Millard 1908 July 7

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 15

Letter from Methuen to Millard 1913 December 1

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 16

Methuen v. Millard, Brief 1926

Mixed Materials Wilde M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 17

Correspondence disclosed after plaintiff's affadavit of documents 1922-1923

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 18

Methuen v. Millard, trial documents and lists of witnesses 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 19

Methuen v. Millard, Statement of Claim 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 20

Methuen v. Millard, testimony transcript of J.C. Squire 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 21

Methuen v. Millard, Defence typescript with handwritten corrections 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 22

Methuen v. Millard, copies of correspondence from Methuen and others 1922-1925

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 23

Methuen v. Millard, copies of correspondence with Vyvyan Hollard 1921-1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 24

Methuen v. Millard, original carbon copy of letter from defendant to Mr. V.B. Holland 1925

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 25

Methuen v. Millard, draft affidavit as to documents by defendant 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 26

Methuen v. Millard, copies of correspondence between Field Roscoe and Cann Jackson & Cann 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 27

Letter from Sidney Jones to Millard 1925 August 17

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 28

Methuen v. Millard, "Further particulars" (list of others who refused to publish Masque) 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 29

Methuen v. Millard, documents etc. in possession of the defendant 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 30

Methuen v. Millard, alleged libel on publishers 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 31

Methuen v. Millard, Defence: further particulars 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 32

Advertisement clipping for Times Literary Supplement 192-?

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 33

Correspondence between Millard and Boris de Skessyreff 1925

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 34

"Who wrote 'For the love of the king'?" circulars 1925

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 35

"Parrot in Court" and newspaper photograph of Mrs. Chan-Toon (2nd copy) 1926 January 6

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 36

John Gilmorton, "A literary hoax?," The outlook 1925 August 8

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 37-38

Methuen v. Millard, Defendant's correspondence (2 copies of packet) 1908-1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 2, Folder 39

Methuen v. Millard, Summons 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 1

Methuen v. Millard, Affidavit as to further documents 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 2

Methuen v. Millard, Particulars of statement of claim 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 3

Methuen v. Millard, Opinion 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 4

Methuen v. Millard, Affidavit as to documents 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 5

Methuen v. Millard, Plaintiff's departmental memoranda 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 6

Methuen v. Millard, Affidavit 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 7

Methuen v. Millard, Copies of documents 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 8

Baptism certificate for Oscar Wilde; Birth, marriage and conviction documents for Mabel Cosgrove 1926

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 9

Correspondence file 1926-1927

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 10

Press clippings 1926-1927

Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 11

G.F. Sims catalog no. 36 1957

General

Catalog from which materials were purchased
Mixed Materials M645Z W6286 Box 3, Folder 12

G.F. Sims, "Who wrote 'For the love of the king'?" The book collector (reprint) 1958

 

Letters from "Oscar Wilde" to Leonard Charles Smithers Series 4. 1880-1900

Mixed Materials 72, Folder 4

Letter 188-

Physical Description: ANS 1 leaf. Forgery. Mourning stationery headed: 16 Tite Street, Chelsea, SW. Without typescript.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2578; Dulau 42.

Also available on microfilm:

Wilde 28-12

Old Call Number

W6721L H926 [188-?]
Mixed Materials 74, Folder 5

Letter 189-

Physical Description: ANS 1 leaf. Writing does not appear to be in Oscar Wilde's hand. Either a forgery or a letter dictated by Wilde to someone who imitated his hand.

Also available on microfilm:

Wilde 28-83

Old Call Number

W6721L L434 [189-?]
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1898 February 25

Physical Description: ALS 1 leaf. Possibly a forgery. Without typescript. With this: original envelope, addressed, stamped and cancelled; postmarked: Paris, February 25, 1898.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2776.

Also available on microfilm:

CLC 220, 249; Wilde 30-111

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1898] [Feb. 25]
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1899

Physical Description: ALS 3 p. Forgery.

Also available on microfilm:

Wilde 30-114

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1899?]e
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1899

Physical Description: ALS 3 p. Forgery.

Also available on microfilm:

Wilde 30-115

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1899?]f
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1899

Physical Description: ALS 4 p. Forgery. Without typescript.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2781.

Also available on microfilm:

CLC 220, 249; Wilde 30-112

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1899?]a
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1899

Physical Description: ALS 3 p. Forgery. Without typescript.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2782.

Also available on microfilm:

CLC 220, 249; Wilde 30-113

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1899?]b
Mixed Materials 74, Folder 3

Letter 1900

Physical Description: ALS 4 p. Identified as a forgery in correspondence from Sir Rupert Hart-Davis,, dated 10 Nov. 1959. Without typescript.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2590a.

Also available on microfilm:

CLC 148; Wilde 28-16

Old Call Number

W6721L I31 [1900?]
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1900

Physical Description: ALS 3 p. Forgery. Without typescript.

Scope and Contents note

References: Finzi 2785.

Also available on microfilm:

CLC 220, 249; Wilde 30-116

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1900?]
Mixed Materials 77, Folder 3

Letter 1900

Physical Description: ALS 4 p. Forgery.

Also available on microfilm:

Wilde 30-99

Old Call Number

W6721L S6642 [1900?]a