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The Thread of Life: an introduction to molecular biology , 1963-1977

MSS. Eng. c. 2583-2585
Held at the Weston Library

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The Thread of Life: an introduction to molecular biology, London 1966, reprinted 1967, 1968.

The book was based on a series of ten lectures delivered on BBC Television. The programmes were recorded at the Royal College of Surgeons of England between 25 November and 4 December 1963, transmitted weekly from 4 January to 7 March 1964, and repeated in July 1964. A German version, "Der Faden des Lebens", was recorded by Kendrew in Munich in August 1964 for Bayerische Rundfunk, and repeated January to March 1966.

In January 1964, when the TV series was first announced, Kendrew was approached by G. Bell & Sons Ltd. about an adaptation for publication in book form, and this eventually appeared in June 1966. The German version was published by Nymphenburger Verlagshandlung Munich in 1967.

The book was very successful. An American edition from Harvard University Press appeared in 1966, and there were translations in Japanese, Hungarian, Danish/Norwegian, Polish, Russian and Spanish.


  • Creation: 1963-1977


3 shelfmarks

Language of Materials

  • English


MSS. Eng. c. 2583-2585

Former reference:

NCUACS 11/4/89/L.31-49