Fonds GB 0210 MSSNELL - Snell & Sons Collection of Music Manuscripts,

Identity area

Reference code



Snell & Sons Collection of Music Manuscripts,


  • 1747-1933 (accumulated [1900x1967]) / (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

137 volumes.

Context area

Name of creator

Administrative history

The music publishing company of Snell & Sons, Swansea, Glamorgan, was established by D. J. Snell in 1900. The firm has always taken great interest in purchasing the publishing rights of Welsh compositions, and has long enjoyed a reputation as the largest publisher of Welsh music in the world. The Company have acquired music manuscripts from many leading Welsh composers.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

NLW MSS 9298-9299; Messrs Snell & Sons; Swansea; Purchase (with NLW MSS 9281-9297); October 1934

NLW MSS 19761-19896; Snell and Sons (per Deloitte, Plender, Griffiths & Co. as Public Receiver); Swansea; Purchase; May 1967

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Manuscripts, mainly [19 cent., second ½]-1933, of the work of Welsh composers, mostly autograph, comprising holographs, copies and drafts of scores and sets of orchestral parts and also lyrics, including works by John Thomas (Pencerdd Gwalia), Dr Joseph Parry, David Jenkins, W. T. David and others. The collection also includes part of a Mass and a Te Deum by Giovanni Bononcini, 1747.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Action: All records purchased by the National Library of Wales have been retained..


Accruals are possible.

System of arrangement

Arranged according to NLW MSS reference numbers: NLW MSS 9298-9299, 19761-19896.

Arranged at NLW by composer.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to abide by the conditions set out in information provided when applying for their Readers' Tickets, whereby the reader shall become responsible for compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998 in relation to any processing by them of personal data obtained from modern records held at the Library.

Conditions governing reproduction

Usual copyright laws apply.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

English, Welsh, Latin.

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A hard copy of the catalogue is available at the National Library of Wales. A superseded catalogue is also available in hard copy at NLW. This is more detailed than the current catalogue in some respects, and includes descriptions of former Snell MSS 67, 74-76, 83, 86-89, 92-94 and 122, which are no longer part of the collection.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

See also NLW, Snell & Sons Records (being a further group of records donated to the National Library of Wales in June 1993) and NLW, Dr Joseph Parry Manuscripts, including further manuscripts purchased from Snell & Sons.

Related descriptions

Publication note

Most of the works in the archive have been published, but publication rarely extended to the full score; the practice was for performers to hire the full score and orchestral parts (or 'band parts') from the publisher.

Notes area


Title based on contents of fonds.

Alternative identifier(s)

Virtua system control number


Project identifier


Access points

Place access points

Genre access points

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 David Moore for the ANW project. The following sources were consulted in the compilation of this description: NLW, Handlist of Snell manuscripts; Snell & Sons website, March 2003;

Accession area