Search the letters

The Vaughan Williams Foundation has made over 5000 items freely available: chiefly letters from Ralph Vaughan Williams, but including some responses which shed light on the subject matter, and also a number of letters from Adeline and Ursula Vaughan Williams. These provide further information and often include messages or observations from Ralph, and there are also letters from Adeline and Ursula written on behalf of the couple. The text of letters written by RVW and UVW remain the copyright of the Foundation.

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The letters are in tabular form and can be sorted by column, or filtered by any keyword including name, musical title, place, year or subject (singly or in combination).

To search by letter number, include the prefix VWL, e.g. VWL123.

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Letter No. Title Date Date on Letter
VWL222 Letter from Thomas Hardy to Ralph Vaughan Williams 19081129 Nov. 29. 1908
VWL221 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Edward J. Dent 19081111 Nov 11th [1908]
VWL220 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Frederick Delius 19071030 [After 24 October 1907]
VWL219 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Frederick Delius 19071024 Oct. 24th [1907]
VWL218 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19070603 [3rd June 1907]
VWL217 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19070106 Jan 6th 1907
VWL216 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19061126 November 26 [1906]
VWL215 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19070301 [early March 1907]
VWL214 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19061107 Nov 7th [1906]
VWL213 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19061018 Oct 18th [1906]
VWL212 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19061017 Oct 17th [1906]
VWL211 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19061010 [10th October 1906]
VWL210 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19061005 [5th October 1906]
VWL209 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Joanna Hadley 19061001 [About 1st October 1906]
VWL208 Letter from Adeline Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19060911 September 11 [1906]
VWL207 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19060806 [6th August 1906]
VWL206 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19060801 [About 1st August 1906 ]
VWL205 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to R.A. Streatfeild 19060701 July 1st [1906]
VWL204 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19090320 [20th March 1909]
VWL203 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 189710-- [Early October 1897]
VWL202 Letter from Max Bruch to Ralph Vaughan Williams 18980205 5 February 1898
VWL201 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 189802-- [February 1898]
VWL200 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19051112 [12th November 1905]
VWL199 Letter from Adeline Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19050531 May 31st [1905]
VWL198 Letter from Adeline Vaughan Williams to Ralph Wedgwood 19050428 April 28th [1905]
VWL197 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans 19050326 [On or about March 26 1905]
VWL196 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans 19050324 March 24 [1905]
VWL195 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans 19050316 March 16th [1905]
VWL194 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans 19050314 March 14th [1905]
VWL193 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to F.W. Evans 19050309 March 9th [1905]

You have never lost your invention but it has not developed enough.  Your best – your most original and beautiful style or ‘atmosphere’ is an indescribable sort of feeling as if one was listening to very lovely lyrical poetry.

GUSTAV HOLST letter to RVW 1903

He was one of the most 'complete' men I have ever known. He loved life, he loved work and his interest in all music was unquenchable and insatiable.

SIR JOHN BARBIROLLI, conductor

I was thunderstruck by the symphony last night - and hadn't expected to be. Jagged, pulsating and angry, from that very first clanging dissonance - how can it have come from the same source as the Tallis Fantasia?

AUDIENCE MEMBER, Newbury Festival