Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley autograph manuscript draft: 'The Invisible Girl' [incomplete]
Mary Shelley’s ‘The Invisible Girl’ was published in The Keepsake annual for 1833, described as being ‘by the Author of Frankenstein’. The manuscript consists of four pages of autograph manuscript text, with autograph revisions throughout, paginated 5 to 8 (single bifolium, 230 x 185mm). The manuscript has the lower portion of the second leaf cut away, but there is no apparent loss of text.
The manuscript is the second of what is presumed to be four original fair copy bifolia, sent to the editor of The Keepsake, Frederic Mansel Reynolds, in July 1832. The fourth and final bifolium is now held at the New York Public Library as part of the Carl H. Pforzheimer Collection of Shelley and His Circle, a 2 ¼ pages (2 leaves) manuscript consisting of the story’s conclusion [shelfmark MWS 0323]. The whereabouts of the presumed first and third portions of the total manuscript of ‘The Invisible Girl’ are unknown.
- Creation: [c.Jul 1832]
Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Access
To ensure its availability to future readers, access to this material is restricted, and readers are asked to work from reproductions and published descriptions as far as possible. To apply to see the original, please send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org, outlining the subject of your research, the importance of this material to that research, and the resources you have already consulted. Please also tell us about the timeframe for your project, if any, and when you hope to visit.
Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 19324].
Collection ID (for staff)
CMD ID 19324
Autograph manuscript draft [incomplete] of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s short story, ‘The Invisible Girl’ [c. Jul 1832].
Biographical / Historical
For a full biography of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley [née Godwin], see entry in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
This manuscript was sold by Bonhams, London, on 27 March 2019 [lot 197]. The manuscript was originally part of a 19th-century album of autograph letters and manuscripts, retaining evidence it was at some point pasted onto a guard and bearing a 19th-century inscription, ‘Mrs Shelley – Author of Frankenstein &c’. The album was sold separately at the same auction by Bonhams in March 2019 [lot 191]. The album had the bookplate of John Coubrough of Blanefield [c.1841-1921] who had presumably collected the material.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Purchased with the generous support of the Friends of the National Libraries from Maggs Bros. Ltd, 2020.
Existence and Location of Copies
A digitised edition is available at Digital Bodleian and should be used in place of the original.
- Catalogue of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley autograph manuscript draft: 'The Invisible Girl' [incomplete, c. Jul 1832]
- Finding aid prepared by Rachael Marsay
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Catalogued with the generous support of the Roy Davids bequest