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Identity statement

Reference code(s)
GB0100 KCLCA Williams, C W S
WILLIAMS, Charles Walter Stansby (1886-1945)
Level of description
Collection (fonds)
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
Ā½ box


Name of creator(s)

Williams, Charles Walter Stansby, 1886-1945, author and poet

Administrative / Biographical history

Born in London, 1886; educated at St Albans School and University College, London; joined Oxford University Press as a reader, 1908; remained a member of staff (as a literary advisor) until his death, working mainly in London; published his first book of verse, 1912; a prolific author, he continued to write and lecture until his death, producing anthologies, prefaces, reviews, and over thirty volumes of poetry, plays, literary criticism, fiction, biography and theological argument; associates included C S Lewis, T S Eliot and Dorothy Sayers; member of the Church of England; increasingly devoted his writings, particularly his novels, Arthurian poems, and literary and theological commentaries, to doctrines of romantic love (believing that the romantic approach could reveal objective truth) and the coinherence of all humans; abandoned the traditional form of his early verse; in recognition of two courses of lectures in wartime Oxford, awarded an honorary MA (University of Oxford), 1943; died at Oxford, 1945. See also C S Lewis's preface to Essays presented to Charles Williams (Oxford University Press, London, 1947). Publications: Poetry: The Silver Stair (1912); Poems of Conformity (1917); Divorce (1920); Windows of Night (1925); A Myth of Shakespeare (1929); Heroes and Kings (1930); Three Plays (1931); Thomas Cranmer of Canterbury (the Canterbury Festival play, 1936); Taliessin through Logres (1938); Judgement at Chelmsford (1939); The Region of the Summer Stars (1944). Prose: as editor, A Book of Victorian Narrative Verse (1927); Poetry at Present (1930); War in Heaven (1930); Introduction to Gerard Hopkins's Poems (2nd edition, 1930); Many Dimensions (1931); The Place of the Lion (1931); The Greater Trumps (1932); The English Poetic Mind (1932); Shadows of Ecstasy (1933); Bacon (1933); Reason and Beauty in the Poetic Mind (1933); James I (1934); Rochester (1935); Elizabeth (1936); New Book of English Verse (1935); Descent into Hell (1937); Henry VII (1937); He came down from Heaven (1937); Descent of the Dove (1939); Witchcraft (1941); The Forgiveness of Sins (1942); The Figure of Beatrice (1943); as editor, The Letters of Evelyn Underhill (1943); All Hallows' Eve (1944).

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The collection was received with printed material deposited in King's College Library by the Charles Williams Society in 1977.

Content & structure

Scope and content

Papers of and relating to Charles Walter Stansby Williams, 1937-1946 and undated, including corrected proof of The Region of Summer Stars ; typescripts including 'Terror of Light', 'The Working of Porphyry', 'Taliessin in the Rose Garden', and 'Prologue' to a production of The Way of the Cross by Henry Gheon; memorabilia relating to Williams, including three photographs, and obituaries.

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Director of Archive Services, King's College London.

Language/scripts of material


Finding aids

Collection level description available in reading room at King's College London Archives.

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals

King's College London College Archives

Related units of description

King's College Library received c30 volumes on English literature on deposit from the Charles Williams Society in 1977. King's College London Archives, KAL/AD6/F82, documents the transfer and includes some biographical information on Williams.

Description control

Archivist's Note

Compiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project. Sources: brief description in King's College London Manuscripts and Private Papers: A Select Guide (1982); Dictionary of National Biography; Who's Who; Location register of twentieth-century English literary manuscripts (1988); National Register of Archives; King's College Archives, KAL/AD6/F82.

Rules or conventions

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

Date(s) of descriptions

Jan 2001

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  • Literary forms and genres
  • Literature
  • Photographs
  • Poetry
  • Visual materials

Personal names

  • Gheon, Henri, 1875-1944, Author
  • Williams, Charles Walter Stansby, 1886-1945, Author and Poet

Corporate names

  • King's College London College Archives

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