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
VWL5112 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Arnold van Wyk 19510321 21st. March, 1951.
VWL5111 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Frits Stegmann 19490413 13th April, 1949.
VWL5110 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Arnold van Wyk 19510725 25th July, 1951.
VWL5109 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of the Morning Post 19031201 [1 December, 1903]
VWL5108 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of the Morning Post 19060828 August 28, 1906
VWL5107 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of the Morning Post 19041008 Sunday 8 October, 1904
VWL5106 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of the Morning Post 19031215 156 Dec. 1903
VWL5105 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Morning Post 19040924 Sep 24 1904
VWL5104 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the editor of The Musical Times 19560201 [February, 1956]
VWL5103 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Times 19551116 Wednesday 16 November, 1955
VWL5102 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Times 19561024 Wednesday 24 October, 1956
VWL5101 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Times 19580612 12 June, 1958
VWL5100 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Times 19560911 [11 September, 1956]
VWL5099 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to John Cruft 19560225 Feb 25 [1956]
VWL5098 Letter from Ursula Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19580828 Thursday [28 August 1958]
VWL5097 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19400324 Easter Sunday [March 24 1940]
VWL5096 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to the Editor of The Times 19551207 [Wednesday, 7 December, 1955]
VWL5095 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 194----- [1940s?]
VWL5094 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19431228 Dec 28 [1943?]
VWL5093 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 194----- Wednesday [early 1940s]
VWL5092 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 194-0404 April 4 [1940s?]
VWL5091 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 194----- Nov 12 [1940s?]
VWL5090 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19441013 Friday [13 October 1944]
VWL5089 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 194----- Jan 21 [1940s?]
VWL5088 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 1953---- 1953-1957]
VWL5087 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19410310 March 10 [1941]
VWL5086 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19450104 Jan 4 [1945?]
VWL5085 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19440709 Sunday [July 1944]
VWL5084 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 19531220 Dec 20 [1953 or later]
VWL5083 Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart 1935---- Feb 13 [late 1930?s]

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