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Archive of ms material relating to work on Baron Corvo by Donald Weeks

Identifier: Coll-1580

Scope and Contents

The collection is composed of 23 x folders, containing the following items:

  1. 1-2: Two ts letters from Ian Fletcher to Donald Weeks - Postal stamped: 8th August 1964 & 5th August 1964
  2. 3-5: Three letters addressed to Donald Weeks - Dated: (ms) 31st Dec. 1962 from L. Green, (ts) 21st July 1966 from F. Weatherhead, and (ts) 6th Feb. 1985 from Dr. E Bruce Tovee.
  3. 6: One portrait photograph of Donald Weeks, circa 1939
  4. 7: One ts letter from Robert M. MacGregor, acquaintance of Baron Corvo, to Donald Weeks - Dated 11 July 1958
  5. 8-10: Three ms letters from Dr. Stanley W. Jackson, collector of Corvo, to Donald Weeks - Dated 19 September 1958, 22 February 1961, and 30 December 1962
  6. 11: One ms letter from Thomas R. Schlientz, Detroit, dealer in Corvo, to Donald Weeks - Dated 6 June 1961
  7. 12-17: Corrected typescript of a Corvine short story, 'An intrusion upon eternity' by Christopher Arno, and 5 letters being: 1 ts letter from Andre Simon to 'Dear Mr. Weeks', dated 18 December 1961, 1 ms letter from John Roth to 'Dear Mr. Weeks' dated 2 January 1962, 2 letters from Leonard F. Bahr to 'Don' ms dated 2 April 1962 and ts to 'Dear Don' dated 12 February 1963, and 1 ts letter from C. E. Van Norman to 'Dear Don' undated
  8. 18: Corrected typescript of an article, 'Rolfe and Venice', Donald Weeks, circa 1964
  9. 19: One ts letter on Corvine matters from Clay Lancaster, New York, to 'Dear Donald Weeks' - Dated 1 April 1964
  10. 20: One ts letter from Clarence Andrews, Iowa, an editor of Corvo, to 'Dear Donald' - Dated 28 December 1965
  11. 21-22: One news clipping, a review of 'Hadrian the Seventh by Peter Luke, 'Success in quest for Corvo, an 1 ms letter from Sir Shane Leslie, acquaintance of Corvo, to 'Dear Donald' dated 10 May 1969
  12. 23-50: Research file of correspondence and certificates relating to Corvo's last companion, Thomas Wade-Browne, 1966-1968,
  13. 51: One ms letter from Sir Harry Luke, an acquaintance of Corvo, to 'Dear Donald Weeks' - Dated 12 August 1968
  14. 52: One ts letter from Raleigh Trevelyan, publisher and dedicatee of Corvo, to 'Dear Mr. Weeks' - Dated 6 August 1970
  15. 53-57: Four letters from Julius and Julia Goodman, Grosse Pointe, Michigan, publishers and dedicatees of Corvoto Donald Weeks, being: 1 ms letter dated 13 August 1971, 1 ts letter dated 26 November 1971, 1 ts letter dated 29 November 1978, and 1 ts letter dated 2 December 1978, with news clipping 'Thoughts on the legacy of a troubled era'
  16. 58: Corrected typescript of an article, 'Corvine decipherment', by Donald Weeks, circa 1977
  17. 59-61: Three ms letters from Michael Simpson, collector of Corvo, to Donald Weeks - Dated 1 February 1979, 7 February 1979, and 8 August 1979
  18. 62-76: File of correspondence from translator of Corvo, Geerten Maria Meijsing, Arsina and Haarlem, 1979-1986, also some blank letter-headed sheets
  19. 77-79: Three ts letters from Susan Zurick, collector of Corvo, to 'Donald' - Dated 31 March 1979, 6 August 1979, and 16 August 1979
  20. 80-83: Carbon-copy typescript of an article 'Alan Wright and Gleeson White' (1980) which was a bibliographical note in 'The Book Collector'; Copy of pp.592-593 of 'The Book Collector' with the article; ts letter from Donald Weeks to 'The Book Collector' dated 7 January 1980; and ts letter from Joan Stevenson of 'The Book Collector' dated 25 July 1980
  21. 84-85: Two ts letters from Anthony Reid, Ringwood, on Corvine matters, to 'Dear Donald - Dated 29 October 1983, and 22 November 1984
  22. 86: One letter from translator of Corvo, J. J. van Herpen, Hilversum - dated 24 October 1983
  23. 87-93: Seven additional letters and postcards over the period 1966-1980, being: ts letter from John Rotch to 'Dear Mr Weeks' dated 25 May 1966, ts letter from P.P. Maguire, RTE, to 'Dear Mr Weeks', ms postcard (postmarked 1968) from Susan and Brendan Gregory to 'Dear Donald', ms letter from Susan and Brendan Gregory to 'Dear Donald' dated 28 February 1973, ms postcard (postmarked ?1974) from Susan and Brendan Gregory to 'Dear Donald', ts letter from Charles W. Sachs to 'Dear Mr Weeks' dated 9 May 1980, and ts letter from Charles W. Sachs to 'Dear Mr Weeks' dated 8 August 1980


  • Creation: 1939-1986


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Open to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance of visit.

Biographical / Historical

The Tragara Press was founded by Alan Anderson (b. 1922) in the early-1950s when he also studied printing at Edinburgh College of Art. Although the first book with a Tragara Press imprint appeared in 1954, Anderson worked mainly as a bookseller until the 1970s before devoting himself to printing and publishing full-time. He moved to Loanhead, Midlothian, in 1986, and then latterly to Beauly, Inverness-shire. The name, Tragara Press, is derived from the Punta Tragara hotel on the island of Capri, Italy, which had been a favourite destination for Anderson.

Donald Weeks the Corvo scholar and biographer was a prolific contributor to the bibliography of the Tragara Press. Weeks was born on 18 April 1921, in Detroit, Michigan. As a child he had a talent for art and design, and he specialised in industrial design at Cass Technical High School, Detroit, before winning a scholarship to Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. After service with US Military Intelligence in the Pacific theatre during the Second World War, he returned to Detroit. There he worked as a freelance graphic designer, and became art editor of the Chevrolet in-house magazine.

Week's had developed an interest in European literature and he became fascinated with the works of author Frederick William Rolfe (Baron Corvo) (1860-1913). Research into Rolfe led Donald Weeks to England in 1960, and then he moved there in 1966. He spent much of the rest of the 1960s following in Rolfe's footsteps, and began writing a biography. Weeks' work on Corvo (published by Tragara) would go much deeper than that of A. J. A. Symons in his Quest for Corvo (1952). Donald Weeks died in Middlesex Hospital on 7 September 2003.

Frederick Rolfe was born in Cheapside, London, on 22 July 1860. He taught briefly at The King's School, Grantham. He converted to Catholicism in 1886 and he had a strong desire to become a priest though this was not fulfilled. He did however attend, for a while, the Scots College in Rome and during this time entered the circle of Caroline Shirley, Duchess Sforza Cesarini (1818-1897). He claimed that she had adopted him as a grandson giving him the title, Baron Corvo.

Baron Corvo would become Rolfe's best-known pseudonym, though others were Frank English, Frederick Austin, and A. Crab Maid among others. He spent most of his life as a freelance writer, mainly in England but eventually in Venice, relying on benefactors for support. His principal work of fiction was Hadrian the Seventh (1904).

Frederick Rolfe, Baron Corvo, died on 25 October 1913 and is buried on the Isola di San Michele, Venice.


1 box

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquired September 2014 by purchase. Accession no: E2014.70

Related Materials

Also within Edinburgh University, Special Collections, there is: Coll-1571, being 'Letters from Alan Anderson (b. 1922), The Tragara Press, to Donald Weeks (1921-2003) about Corvine material'; and, Coll-1579, being a 'Letter from Alan Anderson (b. 1922), The Tragara Press, to Donald Weeks (1921-2003) about the O'Sullivans'.

Processing Information

Catalogued by Graeme D. Eddie 23 April 2015


Papers relating to Tragara Press titles, Donald Weeks (1921-2003) and Baron Corvo
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
George Square
Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
+44(0)131 650 8379