Guide to the Papers of E. L Grant Watson


MS 4950

National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Collection Summary

Papers of E. L Grant Watson
Date Range
1904 - 1967
Collection Number
MS 4950
0.87 metres (1 MS Box + 4 Archive Boxes)
Language of Materials
Special Collections (Manuscripts)


Scope and Content

The collection consists of letters from a number of literary figures including Havelock Ellis and C.G. Jung, correspondence between E.L. Grant Watson and his mother while he was in Australia during the early part of this century, and letters from his friend, Ida; photographs; newspaper cuttings; texts of broadcast talks given by E.L. Grant Watson in the 1940s and a talk about him given in 1955; typed drafts of published and unpublished poems, novels, short stories and his autobiography; copies of some of his nature books and essays, novels and scientific works. Also includes correspondence between Dorothy Green, Katherine Grant Watson and daughter Josephine, and a manuscript copy of Katherine Grant Watson's autobiography, 'Between two worlds'.

Conditions Governing Access

Please refer to the collection's catalogue record for the access conditions (

Conditions Governing Use

Copying and publishing of unpublished manuscript material is subject to copyright restrictions. For such material, written permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder(s). Copying of unpublished material for research purposes is permissible 50 years after the death of the creator of the material.

Preferred Citation

Items from this collection should be cited as '[Title or description of manuscript item], Papers of E. L Grant Wilson, National Library of Australia, MS 4950, [series and/or file number]'.


The collection was donated to the Library in numerous instalments between 1975 and 2002.

Papers of Paul Brennan are held at NLA MS 8116.

Biographical Note

See: Introduction to Descent of spirit: writings of E.L. Grant Watson / edited by Dorothy Green (Sydney: Primavera Press, 1990).

Item Descriptions

Class [unnumbered]. Original Consignment

To this end - corrected t/s draft, n. d (File [unnumbered]) - Box 1

Signature Philosopher of Earth: a study of the work of E.L. Grant Watson - t/s of BBC Radio broadcast, 1955 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 1

Books (File [unnumbered]) - Box 1

With the Australian Aborigines (London: Philip and Son, 1930)

Deliverance (New York: Knopf, 1920) - with corrections

Walking with fancy (London: Country Life, 1943)

The Leaves return (London: Country Life, 1947) - with clippings of reviews pasted on endpapers

Profitable wonders: some problems of plant and animal life (London: Country Life, 1949)

Books (continued) (File [unnumbered]) - Box 2

Shadow and sunlight: a romance of the tropics (London: Cape, 1921)

English country (London: Cape, 1924)

Moses: the Lord of the prophets (London: Thornton Butterworth, 1929)

The Common earth (London: Dent, 1932)

It's up to you (London: Noel Douglas, 1933)

Mysteries of natural history (New York: Stokes, 1937)

Moonlight in Ur: a romance (London: Noel Douglas, 1932)

A Mighty man of valour (London: Duckworth, 1939)

Man and his universe (London: Hutchinson, [1940])

Wonders of natural history (London: Pleiades, 1947) - with reviews pasted on endpapers.

Nature's changing course (London: Hutchinson, 1961)

Animals in splendour (London: John Baker, 1967)

Moods of earth and sky (New York: Boni and Liveright, n.d.)

Corrected typescripts (File [unnumbered]) - Box 3

After this darkness (3 folders)

The Silver axe: some folk tales and their meanings, an interpretation

The Gilgamesh epic

Land and spirit

Between two men

Moses and the shepherd

For better or for worse

The Renegade hero and the anima

Man out of the sea

The Serpent in Eden

The Four sacred ones and other poems

The Island [Play]

Folder of cuttings of press reviews, 1924-37 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 3

Correspondence between E.L. Grant Watson ("Peter") and his mother, Mrs Powell, 1901-18 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Letters from literary figures including John Cowper Powys, Havelock Ellis, Carl Jung, Kenneth Walker, Kathleen Raine, A.R. Brown and Goodwin Baynes, 1909-56 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Letters from friend Ida, 1966-67 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Typescripts (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

A Meditation on some of the apocryphal sayings of Jesus

Encounter with Dr Jung

Herman Melville as philosopher and poet

Reprints of journal articles by Grant Watson (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

The Four sacred women and other verses, n.d.

Melville's testament of acceptance, New England quarterly, 1933 (reprinted 1974)

Moby Dick, London mercury, 1920 (reprinted 1974)

Facts at variance with the theorof organic evolution,

Transactions of The Victoria Institute, 1931.

Transformation of the immature, British homeopathic journal, 1969

All that is not my own, British homeopathic journal, 1962

The Serpent, British homeopathic journal, 1958

Typescripts of broadcast talks by Grant Watson, 1947-49 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Calling West Africa: why study ... science?

Neither devil nor infidel

Books to read (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Herman Melville as philosopher and poet

Books and people: Herman Melville's poems

"Book Talk" broadcast by Clifford Dyment on But to what purpose by E.L. Grant Watson. (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Class [unnumbered]. Consignment received 12 May 1994

Letter from Kathleen Raine relating to The mystery of physical life [1963] (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Class [unnumbered]. Consignment received 22 January 1998

Letters from Dorothy Green to the Watson Family, 1970-91 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Letters to Dorothy Green from Katharine Grant Watson, 1971-84 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 4

Letters by Katharine Grant Watson and Josephine Spence to Dorothy Green, 1974-91; two letters from Kathleen Raine to Josephine Spence, 1996 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 5

Class [unnumbered]. Consignment received 6 March 1998

Autobiography 'Between two worlds' by Katharine Grant Watson (3 folders) (File [unnumbered]) - Box 5

Class [unnumbered]. Consignment received 18 January 2002

Typescript of Priest Island by E.L. Grant Watson, 1940 (File [unnumbered]) - Box 5