Manuscripts

Oxford University have developed a wonderful First World War poetry resource, making available online manuscripts of all the major, and some minor War Poets, including some 1,200 digitised pages of Gurney manuscript material: correspondence, poetry and notebooks, as well as photographs of Gurney’s annotated copies of the two poetry collections published during his lifetime, Severn & Somme and War’s Embers. You can click HERE to go this website.

To compliment this in some small way, we have made available some sample pages of Gurney’s music manuscripts on this site. These have been made available by kind permission of the Trustees of the Gurney Estate.

To zoom in and see more detail in these manuscripts just click on the image to take you to another page.

Sleep

The opening of Sleep, one of Gurney’s Five Elizabethan Songs – the ‘Elizas’, composed in December 1913-January 1914.

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.


Lights Out

The first page of one of the manuscripts of Lights Out, a setting of a poem by Edward Thomas composed in March 1919

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.


Coronation

The opening of the piano score of the earliest extant orchestral work, the Coronation
March
, composed in December 1910 and going on to be scored in January 1911.

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.


A Gloucestershire Rhapsody

This page from Gurney’s A Gloucestershire Rhapsody, composed between 1919 and 1921, heralds the beginning of the work’s conclusion, bringing back the main theme from the opening – a wonderfully judged transition.

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.


By a Bierside

The first page of Herbert Howells’s orchestration of Gurney’s setting of John Masefield By a Bierside, in Howells’s hand. Composed whilst serving in the trenches in 1916, Gurney sent this song back to Marion Scott who in turn showed it to Howells, who then took it to Stanford. Stanford charged Howells with the orchestration of this and another song written at this time, In Flanders, for performance at a concert at the Royal College of Music in March 1917.

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.


For G

This setting of Wilfrid Gibson’s For G, known by its first line, ‘All night under the moon’,
was written in January 1918.

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This manuscript, its image and content, is © the Ivor Gurney Estate.
To reproduce this image or use this material in any way, please apply to the Trustees.