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

 

Series 1.  Letters from "Oscar Wilde" to Leonard Charles Smithers, 1880-1900

Box 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-?]
Box 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-?]
Box 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]
Box 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
Box 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
Box 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
Box 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
Box 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?]
Box 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?]
Box 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
 

Series 2.  Forgeries from "Andre Gide" and Dorian Hope 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 2.1. Letters from "Oscar Wilde" ; Subseries 2.2. Manuscripts ; and Subseries 2.3. 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).
 

Subseries 2.1 Letters from "Oscar Wilde"

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

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

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

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

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

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" undated

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

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear friend" undated

Physical Description: 2 pages. Sims catalogue no. 4
Box 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
Box 1, Folder 6

"Oscar Wilde" to "my dear Sir" undated

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

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

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

"Oscar Wilde" to "dear friend" undated

Physical Description: 1 page. Sims catalogue no. 8
Box 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
Box 1, Folder 11

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

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

2 visiting cards with inscriptions by "Wilde"

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

Reproduction of Wilde photograph and negative with forged inscription 1882

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

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

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 15
 

Subseries 2.2 Manuscripts

Box 1, Folder 15

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

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

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

Physical Description: 10 pages, in purple ink with numerous corrections and pencilled heading.
Box 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
Box 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.
Box 1, Folder 21

The Importance of Being Earnest

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

The Importance of Being Earnest, Act II

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

First and last verses of The Sphinx

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

Fragments of 2 poems

Physical Description: 1 page, in black ink. Sims catalog no. 22
Box 1, Folder 25

The Nightingale and the Rose

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

The Sphinx Without a Secret

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

The Decay of Lying

Physical Description: 10 leaves. Written in black and purple ink. Sims catalogue no. 25
Box 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
 

Subseries 2.3 Letters regarding collection

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

David Rice to William Figgis 1921

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

Maggs Bros. to William Figgis 1921

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

Gabriel Wells to Davis and Orioli 1922

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

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

Physical Description: Sims catalog no. 31
Box 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
Box 2, Folder 7

Andre Gide to William Figgis 1922 January 9

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

Andre Gide to C. Frederic Harrison 1922 January 5

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

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

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

Christopher Millard to William Figgis 1922-1926

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

Vyvyan Holland to William Figgis 1955

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

Dudley Edwards to William Figgis 1954

Box 2, Folder 14

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

Box 2, Folder 15

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

Box 2, Folder 16

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

Box 1, folder 1

G.F. Sims Catalogue 35