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Sir Francis Cowley Burnand Punch magazine correspondence

Identifier: MS 0130
Finding aid note: Stored onsite at the Woodson Research Center.

Scope and Contents

Sir Francis Cowley Burnand was the editor of "Punch" magazine . His correspondence was directed to the people he worked with and usually concerned the literary material he dealt with. Correspondents include Sir Henry Thompson, the surgeon; Sir F. Carruthers Gould, Mrs. Merivale, Gerald Christy the lecture agent, and others. The letters, which span most of his working life, dealt with Roman Catholicism, Daphne du Maurier, the "Punch" cartoon titled "Dropping the Pilot", Sir Francis' much protested forced "Punch," his plays and their performances, his lectures, life and career.


  • 1861 - 1908

Access Restrictions

This material is open for research.

Conditions Governing Access

Stored onsite at the Woodson Research Center.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish from the Sir Francis Cowley Burnand Punch magazine correspondence must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Rice University.

Biographical Note

Sir Francis Cowley Burnand (1836-1917), was a talented and prolific comedic writer. He began writing stage pieces while at Eton College from 1851-1854. He then moved on to Trinity College, Cambridge University, for three years. He entered the seminary soon after, but decided his true vocation was as a comedic writer for the stage. Burnand authored over one hundered farces, burlesques, pantomimes, light musical pieces, and melodramas. He collaborated with both W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan. He also wrote for the comic periodical "Fun." Mark Lemon, the founding editor of "Punch," recruited him as a regular contributor in 1863. Burnand worked at "Punch" for forty-three years. He was knighted in 1902 - the first time a "Punch" writer had been so honored. After his forced retirement from the magazine in 1906, Burnand toured England with a lecture entitled "Nearly Fifty Years of Punch." His memoirs, titled "Records and Reminiscences," were published in 1903.

Biographical information excerpted from "Encyclopedia of British Humorists, Geoffrey Chaucer to John Cleese," volume 1, A-K., page 169. Garland Publishing, New York and London, 1996.


0.25 Linear Feet (49 letters)

Language of Materials



This collection contains forty-nine letters from Sir Francis Cowley Burnand, British editor of "Punch" magazine,to various people he worked with. The letters span the years 1861-1908

Acquisition Information

This collection was purchased from Mr. Myers, bookdealer, and received May 9, 1958.
Guide to the Sir Francis Cowley Burnand Punch magazine correspondence, 1861-1908
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Repository Details

Part of the Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas Repository

Fondren Library MS-44, Rice University
6100 Main St.
Houston Texas 77005 USA