Hughes, Ted, 1930-1998

Alternative names
Birth 1930-08-17
Death 1998-10-28

Biographical notes:

Assia Wevill was born Assia Gutman on May 15, 1927, in Berlin, Germany. Her mother, Lisa, was a German Protestant, and her father, Lonya, was a Russian Jew. In the late 1930s, the family fled to Tel Aviv to escape the Nazis. Wevill first married John Steel in London in 1946, and from there emigrated to Canada, sending visas to her family in Israel. In Vancouver, she met her second husband, Richard Lipsey, whom she divorced in 1960 to marry her third husband, David Wevill. The Wevills met Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath in London in 1961, and Hughes and Wevill began an affair soon thereafter. Their relationship continued after Plath's suicide, and on March 3, 1965, Wevill gave birth to Alexandra Tatiana Eloise, nicknamed "Shura." Over the course of their relationship, Wevill became increasingly insecure in her relationship with Hughes, and on March 23, 1969, she asphyxiated herself and Shura. Hughes later dedicated his book Crow to their memory.

From the description of Letters to Assia Wevill, 1955-1970. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 123470281

Peter Redgrove, poet, novelist, and playwright, born in Kingston, Surrey, and educated at Taunton School, Somerset, and at Queens College, Cambridge, where he studied natural sciences. From 1954 to 1961 he spent time as a scientific journalist and editor. In 1961 he spent a year at Buffalo University as visiting poet, and in 1962, he was appointed Gregory Fellow in Poetry at Leeds University and remained there until 1965. Redgrove was one of the original members of a group of poets who began meeting under the direction of Philip Hobsbaum in the 1950s. One of his closest associates was Ted Hughes, whom he met and befriended while at Cambridge.

From the description of Letters to Peter Redgrove, [ca. 1966-1984]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385755

Ben Sonnenberg (b. 1936) has been a writer, publisher and literary adviser. He met Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath in 1995 at the home of W.S. (Bill) and Dido Merwin, and these letters reveal a personal and professional correspondence that continued between Sonnenberg and Hughes from 1961 until Hughes's death in 1998. Sonnenberg was the founder and editor of Grand Street Books from 1981-1990. He has published three books: A Grand Street Reader (1986), Performance and Reality: Essays from Grand Street (1989), and his autobiography, Lost Property: Memoirs and Confessions of a Bad Boy (1991). He resides in New York City, and he is a contributor to the political newsletter Counterpunch.

From the description of Letters to Ben Sonnenberg, 1961-2000. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385741

Ted Hughes (1930-1998), poet, born in Devon, England.

From the description of Ted Hughes papers, 1958-1992. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79051041

Ted Hughes was a critically acclaimed poet and scholar, born on August 17th, 1930. In his book Shakespeare and the Goddess of Complete Being (1992), Hughes identified two ancient religious myths that he argued served as a foundation for many of Shakespeare's plays. Prior to writing the book, Hughes laid out his theories and arguments in a series of letters to Donya Feuer. Hughes made copies of the entire body of this correspondence, which he presented to his close friend, Moelwyn Merchant. These copies are included in this collection. Ted Hughes died on October 28th, 1998.

From the guide to the The Ted Hughes Correspondence to Donya Feuer, April 25, 1990-June 14, 1990, (Lewis & Clark College Special Collections and Archives)

Edna Wholey is the sister of John Wholey, one of English poet Ted Hughes' friends from Mexborough Grammar School. Edna Wholey met Ted Hughes in 1941, when he was 11 years old (she was then 14) and he visited her family regularly for the next ten years. The Wholey family lived on Crookhill Estate, where the father was the head gardener and gamekeeper for the estate.

From the description of Letters to Edna Wholey, 1947-1951. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385743

William Stanley Merwin (1927- ) poet, translator, and editor, was born in New York City and grew up in Union City, New Jersey, and in Scranton, Pennsylvania. In 1947 he received an A.B. in English from Princeton University. From 1951-1954 he lived in London, England supporting himself largely by doing translations of Spanish and French classics for the British Broadcasting Corporation Third Programme. In 1956 he returned to America where he was playwright-in-residence for the Poets' Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts. There he met and befriended Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath when they were in the United States in 1957. In 1962 he served as poetry editor for the Nation, and from 1964 to 1965 he lived in Lyon, France, where he was an associate with Roger Planchon's Théâtre de la Cité.

From the description of Letters to W.S. (William Stanley) and Dido Merwin, 1958-1969. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385751

Hungarian poet and translator Janos Csokits met Ted Hughes through his sister, Olwyn, with whom he was friends in Paris in the 1950s. Olwyn Hughes showed Csokits some of her brother's poetry, and she gave him a copy of LUPERCAL, Hughes' second book of poetry, published in 1960. Csokits wrote to Hughes to express his admiration for the book, beginning a correspondence, and a personal and professional friendship, which continued until Hughes' death in 1998. They collaborated to produce two books of English translations of the work of Hungarian poet Janos Pilinszky: JANOS PILINSZKY: SELECTED POEMS, published in 1976, and DESERT OF LOVE, published in 1989.

From the description of Letters to Janos Csokits, 1960-2007. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385757

Hughes is the current Poet Laureate of England and the author of over fifty books of poetry, criticism, and translations of other authors. Hughes was married to fellow writer, Sylvia Plath.

From the description of Collection, 1958-1992 (inclusive). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122587273

Ted Hughes was born in West Yorkshire, England and educated at Cambridge, obtaining a B.A. in 1954 and an M.A. in 1959. Principally as a poet, Hughes has also written plays and children's stories. Among his many published collections are The Hawk in the Rain (1957), Lupercal (1960), Crow (1970), Selected Poems: 1957-1967 (1972) and Moortown (1980). He was named Poet Laureate of England in 1984. Sylvia Plath was born in 1932; her family lived in Wellesley, Massachusetts when she attended Smith College and graduated in 1955. Plath met and married Hughes while attending Cambridge in 1956. Among Sylvia Plath's collections of poetry are The Colossus (1960), The Bell Jar (1963) and Ariel (1965). She committed suicide in 1963.

From the description of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath collection. [1959-1962]. (University of Victoria Libraries). WorldCat record id: 646006491

Ted Hughes (1930-1998), English poet and author, served as Poet Laureate to the Queen from 1984 until his death in 1998. His works include numerous poetry volumes among them, The Hawk in the Rain, Lupercal, Crow, and Rain Charm for the Duchy; prose works such as Winter Pollen, and Shakespeare and the Goddess of Complete Being; and children's works such as, Iron Man, How the Whale Became, and Season Songs. Lucas Myers, English author and long-time friend of English poet, met Ted Hughes while they both were attending Cambridge University.

From the description of Letters to Lucas Myers, 1955-1988. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122385749

Frieda Rebecca Hughes (1960- ), British author and artist, daughter of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath, was born in London on April 1, 1960. Hughes studied art in London and has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Australia, the United States, and England, where her oil paintings received an award from the Royal Academy in London. Fridea Hughes is also the author and illustrator of children's books and her poetry has appeared in The NEW YORKER, PARIS REVIEW, and LONDON MAGAZINE. Her first full-length collection of poems, WOOROLOO, was published by HarperCollins in 1999. Other works include STONEPICKER, published in 2001, and WAXWORKS, published in October 2002. She now makes her home in Wales, with her husband, Hungarian-born painter Lazlo Lukacs.

From the description of Letters to Frieda Hughes, 1971-1997. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 85016135

Poet Laureate of England.

From the description of Ted Hughes papers, 1968-1969. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 496102553


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Ark ID:


  • Tragedy
  • Fine Arts
  • Poets laureate
  • Poets, English
  • English literature--20th century
  • Poetry, Modern--20th century
  • Seasons--Poetry
  • Soldiers
  • Festivals
  • Poets, English--20th century
  • Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616--Tragedies
  • Goddess religion in literature
  • Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616--Knowledge--Mythology
  • Ontology in literature
  • Literature
  • English poetry--20th century
  • Myth in literature
  • Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616--Criticism and interpretation


  • Poets
  • Poets laureate


  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • London (England) (as recorded)
  • England (as recorded)
  • London (England) (as recorded)