Papers of Robert Ross and Vyvyan Holland relating to the Literary Estate of Oscar Wilde
The collection contains: correspondence files relating to the administration of the estate by Robert Ross, Vyvyan Holland and solicitors Parker, Garrett & Co. (1890-1936); legal documents and correspondence in connection to the case Holland v Van Damm (1936-1937); scripts for plays (c.1907-1914); and posters for the Fox Film Co. production of Salome (1918).
- Creation: 1890-1936
1.35 Linear metres (9 physical shelfmarks)
Language of Materials
English, French, German
Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 7018/1].
Full range of shelfmarks:
Collection ID (for staff)
CMD ID 7018
Papers relating to the administration of the literary estate of the poet and playwright Oscar Wilde (1854-1900).
Biographical / Historical
Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), poet and playwright, died in Paris in 1900, a bankrupt. His literary executor was Robert Baldwin Ross (1869-1918), journalist and gallery owner and one of Wilde's most constant friends, remaining loyal after Wilde's scandalous trial and subsequent imprisonment in 1895. After Wilde's death, Ross worked hard to clear the estate of debt and managed to annul the bankruptcy in 1905. His patience in unravelling the 'inextricable muddle' the estate was in ensured that the estate became a valuable property. Ross administered the estate for Wilde's sons, Cyril and Vyvyan Holland (the boys' mother having changed their surname after Wilde's conviction). Cyril Holland (1885-1915) was killed during the First World War; Vyvyan Beresford Holland (1886-1967) became an author and translator, taking over the estate after Ross's death in 1918.
For full biographies of Wilde, Ross and Holland see the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Given by Merlin Holland, 14 August 1990. MSS. 7018/1, 8-9 were originally deposited by the British Record Association in 1986 [items stamped BRA 2201]; some duplicate printed material formerly with the BRA deposit was returned to Mr Holland in 1990.
- See The Bodleian Library Record, Vol. 14, No.5, Oct 1993, p.435.
- Catalogue of the papers of Robert Ross and Vyvyan Holland relating to the Literary Estate of Oscar Wilde
- Finding aid prepared by Rachael Marsay. Original finding aid prepared by Judith Priestman, 1994.
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Catalogued with the generous support of the Roy Davids bequest.