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Royal College of Music

COLLES, Henry Cope (1879-1943)


Reference code(s): GB 1249 Colles

Held at: Royal College of Music

Title: COLLES, Henry Cope (1879-1943)

Date(s): 1938-1939

Level of description: Collection (fonds)

Extent: 7 boxes

Name of creator(s): Colles | Henry Cope | 1879-1943 | musician and historian
Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians


Administrative/Biographical history:

Henry Cope Colles, born Bridgnorth, Shropshire, 20 Apr 1879; entered Royal College of Music at age of 16 and studied music history under Sir Hubert Parry, the organ under Walter Alcock and counterpoint under Walford Davies; won an organ scholarship at Worcester College, Oxford; graduated, 1902; appointed music critic of The Academy and assistant music critic of The Times, 1905, and appointed chief critic, 1911; taught at Cheltenham Ladies College; joined RCM to lecture on music history, analysis and interpretation; joined the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music as an examiner; Fellow and Governor of St Michael's College, Tenbury; chairman of the Church Music Society and of the School of English Church Music; appointed freeman of the Musicians' Company, 1934; Fellow of Worcester College, Oxford, 1936; died London, 4 Mar 1943. Publications: Brahms (London, 1908); The Growth of Music (Oxford, 1912-1916); edited Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians Third edition (London, 1927); Voice and Verse: a Study of English Song (London, 1928); The Chamber Music of Brahms (London, 1933); The Royal College of Music: a Jubilee Record, 1883-1933 (London, 1933); edited Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians Fourth edition (London, 1940); On Learning Music and Other Essays (London, 1940); H. Walford Davies (London, 1942); with MF Alderson History of St Michael's College, Tenbury (London, 1943).


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Henry Cope Colles, 1938-1939, as editor of the Fourth edition of Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians (Macmillans, London, 1940), comprising correspondence with contributors of articles and subjects of articles, including particular accumulations of correspondence with Eric Blom: Alfredo Casella: Sir Henry Walford Davies; Richard Capell; Alfred Einstein; Edwin Evans; Arthur Henry Fox Strangways; Francis William Galpin; Anselm Hughes; Macario Santiago Kastner; Alfred Loewenberg; Gustave Reese; Percy Alfred Scholes; Marion Margaret Scott; John Brande Trend.


Language/scripts of material: English, with some French, German and Italian.

System of arrangement:

The correspondence has been retained in Colles' original office files, arranged by box in alphabetical order of correspondent's surname, as follows: A-B; C-D; E-F; G-H; I-O; P-S; T-Z.

Conditions governing access:

Usual conditions of the Library of the Royal College of Music apply. See the RCM website or contact the RCM Library for details.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopying is permitted at the discretion of the Archivist for research purposes only.

Physical characteristics:

Finding aids:

The collection is uncatalogued.


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:


Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Not known


Existence and location of originals:

Existence and location of copies:

Related material:

British Library holds correspondence between Colles and Macmillans, 1909-1939 (Ref: Add MSS 55237-38).

Publication note:



Archivist's note: Compiled by Robert Baxter as part of the RSLP AIM25 Project. Sources: National Register of Archives; article on Colles by Eric Blom and Malcolm Turner, Grove Dictionary of Music.

Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: Jun 2001

Biographies | Prose | Literary forms and genres | Literature
Classical music | Musical styles
Musicians | Performers | Artists
Musicology | Music | Performing arts

Personal names
Blom | Eric Walter | 1888-1959 | musicologist
Capell | Richard | 1885-1954 | music critic
Casella | Alfredo | 1883-1947 | Italian composer, pianist and conductor
Colles | Henry Cope | 1879-1943 | musician and historian
Davies | Sir | Henry Walford | 1869-1941 | Knight | composer organist broadcaster
Einstein | Alfred | 1880-1952 | American musicologist
Evans | Edwin | 1874-1945 | music critic
Galpin | Francis William | 1858-1945 | collector of musical instruments and scholar
Hughes | Anselm | 1889-1974 | musicologist and Anglican Benedictine monk x Hughes | Humphrey Vaughan
Kastner | Macario Santiago | 1908-1992 | musicologist, pianist and harpsichordist
Loewenberg | Alfred | 1902-1949 | lexicographer and historian
Reese | Gustave | 1899-1977 | American musicologist and teacher
Scholes | Percy Alfred | 1877-1958 | musicologist
Scott | Marion Margaret | 1844-1953 | musicologist and musician
Strangways | Arthur Henry | Fox- | 1859-1948 | musicologist, critic and editor x Fox-Strangways | Arthur Henry
Trend | John Brande | 1887-1958 | Professor of Spanish

Corporate names
Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians