Fonds GB 0210 RICLYN - Richard Llewellyn Papers,

Identity area

Reference code



Richard Llewellyn Papers,


  • 1937-c. 1994 (mainly 1970-1983) / (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

0.229 cubic metres (8 boxes)

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Richard Dafydd Vivian Llewellyn Lloyd (Richard Llewellyn) (1906-1983), novelist, was born in London, England, although he claimed throughout his life that he was born in St Davids, Pembrokeshire. He started work as a dishwasher at the Claridges Hotel in London aged sixteen; and joined the army in 1924, serving in India and Hong Kong for six years. On his return to Britain, he held various jobs, including work as a director, playwright, and miner in South Wales. He retired to Llangollen in 1938, and the following year his first novel, How Green Was My Valley, was published, and later made into a film. The novel was a huge success and made Llewellyn world-famous. During the Second World War he served as a captain with the the Welsh Guards in Italy. He subsequently returned to writing, including work as a reporter during the Nuremberg Trials, and as a screenwriter for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in the United States. He spent much of his time thereafter travelling abroad, living in Buenos Aires, Israel and Dublin, which he used as inspiration for his work. He wrote a number of novels between 1939 and 1979, as well as children's books, short stories and plays, though none was as successful as his first novel. He married twice.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Purchased from Bertram Rota Ltd in 1995.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Literary papers and correspondence of Richard Llewellyn, 1952-c. 1994 (mainly 1970-1983), including manuscript and typescript drafts of published and unpublished works by him.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Action: All records have been retained.


Accruals are not expected.

System of arrangement

Arranged into the following: correspondence; published works; unpublished works; and miscellanea.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to sign the 'Modern papers - data protection' form.

Conditions governing reproduction

Queries regarding Richard Llewellyn copyright should be directed to Mrs Susan H. Llewellyn, 310 West 85th Street, New York, NY 10024, USA (information from the Watch file (Writers, Artists and Their Copyright Holders),, November 2005).

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes


Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A hard copy of the catalogue is available at the National Library of Wales. The catalogue can be accessed online.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Further papers are held at NLW, namely contracts, drafts and correspondence, 1937-1948, of the Bodley House Literary Agency relating to Richard Llewellyn (NLW MS 21752E); the original manuscript of 'How Green Was My Valley' (NLW MS 22669E); a script of the radio play 'Poison pen', 1940 (BBC (Wales) Archives, boxes 43 & 51); and seventeen letters and cards, 1944-1945, from him to Sarah Steinman Harms (NLW MS 23710D). In addition, an important archive, 1939-1952 (mainly 1949-1952), including manuscript drafts and typescript copies of books, stories, articles and scripts; correspondence; photographs; and personal papers, is held at the University of Texas at Austin: Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center Library.

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title supplied from contents of fonds. A note by Susan Llewellyn, c. 1994, was written after her husband's death.

Alternative identifier(s)

Virtua system control number


Project identifier


Access points

Subject access points

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Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru = The National Library of Wales

Rules and/or conventions used

Description follows ANW guidelines based on ISAD(G) 2nd ed.;AACR2; and LCSH


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

March 2003


  • English



Archivist's note

Compiled by Annette Strauch for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: NLW, Schedule of Richard Llewellyn Papers; Felton, Mike, Dictionary of Literary Biography: British Novelists, 1930-1959 (1983); Location register of twentieth-century English literary manuscripts and letters (London, 1988); Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at the University of Texas at Austin website ( viewed 28 November 2005.

Accession area

Related people and organizations

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Physical storage

  • Text: Richard Llewellyn Papers.