Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Walter Fraser Oakeshott papers
Date (inclusive): 1926-1986
Oakeshott, Walter, 1903-1987
5.25 linear feet
(9 boxes, 1 oversize folder)
The Getty Research Institute
1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688
Scholar of Medieval art, distinguished by his work on the 12th-century Winchester Bibles and on Elizabethan England. The papers
document much of his work and reflect his lifelong passion for studying and collecting early books and maps. The archive primarily
consists of drafts for books, articles, and lectures, along with numerous photographs used for research and the illustration
of these publications.
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Language: Collection material is in
||Born Nov. 11 to Walter Field Oakeshott, MD, and Kathleen (Fraser) Oakeshott
||Received diploma in Classical Moderations from Balliol College, Oxford
||Received diploma in
Literae Humaniores (Classics) from Balliol College
||Married Nöel Rose
||Assistant Master at Winchester College
||Identified a 15th-century manuscript in Winchester College Library as Malory's
||Released for membership in Pilgrim Trust Unemployment Enquiry
||High Master of St. Paul's School
||Headmaster of Winchester College
||Trustee of the Pilgrim Trust
||Rector of Lincoln College, Oxford
||Rhind Lecturer at Edinburgh University
||Master, Skinners' Company
||Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University
||Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University
||President, Bibliographical Society
||Fellow, British Academy
||Honorary Fellow of Lincoln College
||Died Oct. 13
Open for use by qualified researchers.
Walter Fraser Oakeshott papers, 1926-1986, Getty Research Institute, Research Library, Accession no. 900204.
Acquired in 1990.
The collection was first processed and described in 1990. Laurie Pesheck began re-processing this archive in May 1994 and
completed this finding aid and a new catalog description in July 1994.
136 photographs and postcards were pulled from the Oakeshott papers and are now housed in the repository's Photo Study Collection,
6 postcards: the cruette from the treasury of St.-Denis, France (Louvre); Romanesque French architecture and architectural
23 photos of French Romanesque architectural sculpture (capitals and related elements) in the Musée des Augustins, Toulouse,
from the Episcopal complex of Saint-Etienne and the Priory of Notre-Dame la Daurade, Toulouse, France.〹
2 photos of French Medieval architectural sculpture at Reims and from Corbie.
68 photos of Ms.Add.54782 (the British Library), the Hours of William Lord Hastings, a Flemish ms. from 15th-century Ghent,
illuminated by the Master of the Older Prayerbook of Maximillian I.
37 photos of Ms.Garrett.13 (Princeton University), the Akathistos Hymnos, a Byzantine ms. from the 16th-17th century.
Scope and Content of Collection
Sir Walter Fraser Oakeshott was a scholar of Medieval art, distinguished by his work on the 12th century Winchester Bibles,
and Elizabethan England. His career as professor and school administrator included positions as the Headmaster at Winchester
College, Rector of Lincoln College, and Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University. While Assistant Master and librarian at Winchester
College, Oakeshott identified the Winchester Malory ms. and went on to study the great Winchester Bible in the cathedral library,
which led to a long-term inquiry of the 12th century Winchester school of painting, its sources, and its oeuvre. Oakeshott's
interest in book and map collecting led to several other bibliographic discoveries and identifications, some of them relating
to Sir Walter Raleigh and his peers. Out of such investigations came many articles and books of both a scholarly and popular
nature. The bulk of the material in this archive dates from 1949 to 1986.
The largest portion of the collection contains writings and research files on various subjects, but consists mainly of work
on Medieval art historical topics, such as the Winchester Bibles and related material. A second notable group of documents
represents Oakeshott's studies on Elizabethan England, largely connected with Sir Walter Raleigh, Essex, and Elizabeth I,
and their portrayal in Elizabethan poetry, especially that by Raleigh himself, Edmund Spenser, and Shakespeare. The collection
reflects Oakeshott's interests in maps, cosmography, and the history of trade. Oakeshott's involvement in the Oxford stone
campaign is represented here by several folders of correspondence, drafts for articles, and photographs documenting the process
of restoration of stone buildings at Oxford. The archival material consists mainly of typescripts and ms. drafts for articles,
books, and lectures, with many photographs used for research and/or to illustrate publications.
Additionally, the collection contains correspondence Oakeshott received, with copies of many of his replies. The letters are
of a professional and personal nature. The archive also contains sermons, addresses, obituaries, and eulogies written by Oakeshott;
miscellaneous photos of art from various periods; notebooks, clippings and ephemera; some personal photos; and offprints of
articles by other scholars.
The archive is organized in five series:
Series I: Personal and professional papers, 1949-1986;
Series II: Medieval art, ca. 1936-1972;
Series III: Renaissance and Elizabethan studies, ca. 1960-1986;
Series IV: Various studies, undated;
Series V: Assorted printed material, 1953-1984