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Elizabeth Longford's Pilgrimage of Passion, The Life of Wilfrid Scawen Blunt drafts

Collection MS-2007-015: Elizabeth Longford's Pilgrimage of Passion, The Life of Wilfrid Scawen Blunt drafts


  • Creation: approximately 1979

Scope and Contents

Contains a complete typescript with handwritten additions and corrections for Longford's biography of the writer Wilfrid Scawen Blunt. Additionally there are thirty five handwritten draft notebooks that represent a complete draft of the book.


Restrictions on access

Collection is open for research.

Restrictions on use

These materials are made available for use in research, teaching and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source. The original authors may retain copyright to the materials.

Biographical note: Elizabeth Longford

Elizabeth Longford was born Elizabeth Harman in 1906 in London, England, the eldest of five children of two doctors. Elizabeth attended Francis Holland School in London, Headington School in Oxford, and eventually Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. There she met close friend Hugh Gaitskell, later leader of the Labour Party. In Oxford she also met her future husband Frank Pakenham. They married in 1931. Both eventually converted to Roman Catholicism and also shared strong socialist beliefs. They had eight children, many of whom became writers including Antonia Fraser, Rachel Billington, and Thomas Pakenham. In 1961 she became Lady Longford when her husband inherited an earldom.

Longford didn't start publishing until her 50s with Jameson's Raid in 1960. Other works included Victoria RI, a biography about Queen Victoria in 1964 and the acclaimed two-volume biography of the Duke of Wellington in 1969 and 1972. She also wrote about Winston Churchill, Lord Byron, and Wilfrid Scawen Blunt.

Elizabeth Longford published her memoirs, entitled The Pebbled Shore, in 1986 on the occasion of her eightieth birthday. She was a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and was on the board of trustees of the National Portrait Gallery in London. She died on October 23, 2002 at age 96.


Elizabeth Harman Pakenham, Countess of Longford. Encyclopaedia Britannica. Accessed on June 6, 2020.

Elizabeth Longford (Elizabeth, Countess of Longford). Royal Society of Literature. Accessed on June 9, 2020.

Grove, Valerie. "Lady Elizabeth Longford". The Guardian, October 24, 2002. Accessed on June 9, 2020.

"Lady Longford dies aged 96" BBC News, 23 October 2002. [Accessed on-line at on 23 August 2007.]

Biographical note: Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

Wilfrid Scawen Blunt (1840-1922), British poet and writer, served in the Diplomatic Service from 1858 to 1869. In 1869, he married Lady Anne Noel, the granddaughter of Lord Byron. Blunt traveled extensively in the Middle East and in India. He was a strong opponent of British imperialism and his prose works included The Future of Islam (1882), Ideas about India (1885), and The Secret History of the English Occupation of Egypt (1907). He was also involved in Irish politics and composed his In Vinculis sonnets while imprisoned in Ireland.


Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 174: British Travel Writers, 1876-1909. A Bruccoli Clark Layman Book. Edited by Barbara Brothers, and Julia Gergits, Youngstown State University. The Gale Group, 1997. pp. 41-53. [Accessed on-line at on 23 August 2007.]


3 Linear Feet (5 containers)

Language of Materials



The papers concern the work of twentieth-century British historian and biographer Elizabeth Longford. Included is a typescript and thirty-five draft notebooks of Pilgrimage of Passion: The Life of Wilfrid Scawen Blunt.


Arranged with the typescript preceding the notebooks. The notebooks are in the order of the published edition of the work.


Gift of Elizabeth Longford, 1996.

Related Materials

Frank Pakenham, Earl of Longford manuscripts, MS.2003.006, John J. Burns Library, Boston College.

Correspondence from Wilfrid Scawen Blunt to Wilfrid Meynell is available in the Wilfrid Meynell collection, MS.1986.042, John J. Burns Library, Boston College.

Elizabeth Longford's Pilgrimage of Passion, The Life of Wilfrid Scawen Blunt Drafts
approximately 1979
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Repository Details

Part of the John J. Burns Library Repository

John J. Burns Library
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill MA 02467 United States