The Clark — and the rest of UCLA — will be closed from December 18th until January 3rd. We hope you have a happy holiday season and a very happy new year!
The Clark recently purchased an apparently never-published poem by Selwyn Image, written in honor of John Milton’s tercentenary on December 9, 1908. Our manuscript of the poem was actually written out a month after Milton’s December 9th birthday, on January 7, 1909, and was dedicated to “E.M.P.”
In honorem J.M. Decr. 9. 1908.
Three centuries! and lo! this golden day
The Eternal spake, and bade a Child arise
Dowered with grave gifts of passionate enterprise,
For England’s glory to make straight the way:
Prophet of the Highest, against whose fire might stay
Nor chaff of tyrants ‘mid established lies,
No, nor of cringing varlets, that would prize
As naught their manhood, so they but clutched their pay.
Milton, around thy cradle here we kneel,
Thy countrymen, on this fair natal morn,
Thanking our God for thee, stern witness born
Of all that could make an England pure and free:
Hail! deathless Champion of our Commonweal,
Whose earth-closed eyes gazed on Eternity.
Selwyn Image, “In honorem J.M.,” ba MS.2010.029, William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, UCLA.
Hannah Phoebe Clark, 14 (72 human years), of the Clark Library, died this past Wednesday, December 1.
She was born to unknown parents at an unknown date in the city of Beverly Hills, CA. Hannah was street-learned, but she received an honorary Ph. D. from UCLA in 2002. She had many male suitors but chose to remain single as did her namesake the legendary British author and moralist Hannah More (1745-1833).
Knowledge of Hannah’s first years was mostly unknown, except that she was involved in a torrid love affair that left her pregnant and alone. She relocated from Beverly Hills to the grounds of the Clark Library circa 1997 with her daughter Molly in tow.
Hannah was the head of rodent control at the Clark Library and an active greeter of scholars from 1997 until her death. She liked basking in the sun, eating dry cat food and chasing birds occasionally. She also allowed library staff to use her name on this blog, though she personally disdained the use of the internet.
She is survived by her daughter Moll F. Clark, her mentor Suzanne Tatian, her friends on the Clark staff and her fellow cat workforce Sophia, Mr. B, Belinda, and Jett.
In lieu of flowers, the Clark is requesting that donations be made to your local SPCA. French novelist Colette summed it up best when she said “there are no ordinary cats.”
The Clark recently acquired a letter written from Eric Gill to curator Frank Rutter regarding Gill’s statue Mulier [Mother] BVM, which has been on display in front of UCLA’s Young Research Library since the 1960s. At the time (February 1914), Gill was writing to decline lending Mulier to the Leeds City Art Gallery on the grounds that he has decided “not to exhibit it further at present.” The previous month, the sculpture had been on display as a part of Gill’s solo show at the Goupil Gallery.
Mulier was originally commissioned as a garden piece for Roger Fry, but after seeing the finished work, Fry rejected it, worried that his (and his sister’s) visitors would be offended by its overt sexuality.
This letter is relatively unusual among Gill’s correspondence because of the fact that it is entirely handwritten — he often used a typewriter, particularly for business-related letters. Check out our finding aid to the Eric Gill Archive via the Online Archive of California, for this new acquisition and for a listing of other letters, papers and documents in our collection!
Eric Gill, Letter to Frank Rutter, 1914 February 5. In the Eric Gill Archive, Box 99, folder 30 (accession no. MS.2010.028). William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, University of California, Los Angeles.