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Sir Patrick Bateson: research, teaching and administrative records

Reference Code: GBR/0012/MS Add.10285

Scope and Contents

Personal and scientific working papers of Patrick Bateson. Personal papers include material relating to Bateson’s schooling and education, family history papers, diaries, notebooks and journals, a small number of photographs and material relating to his post-retirement interests. Scientific papers include research notebooks, experiment data, offprints, articles and draft articles, material relating to books and proposed books, and assorted notes covering the full range of Bateson’s research interests from his earliest work on ivory gulls in the Arctic Circle to imprinting in birds, perceptual learning in monkeys, mate choice in Japanese quail, play in the domestic cat, hunting of red deer and dog breeding. Administrative papers include some material relating to the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour at Madingley and to other administrative roles held by Bateson at King’s College, Cambridge, and the Royal Society. Teaching papers include lecture notes for Part II Animal Behaviour, Part II Zoology and Part IB Animal Biology, and a large collection of 35mm slides used as teaching or lecture aides.


  • Creation: 1912 - 2017


Conditions Governing Access

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (


1.2 cubic metre(s) (50 archive boxes)

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Contains approx. 1600 35 mm slides, including a small number of glass plate negatives, and approx. 300 photographs. Audiovisual material includes a reel of 16mm film, U-Matic videocassette, VHS, DVD and audiocassette. See descriptions for details.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Presented by Lady Dusha Bateson and Professor Melissa Bateson, 26 April 2019. Transferred in two batches, one from the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour, Madingley, on 7 December 2018 and one from the family home, 26 April 2019.

Related Materials

Material relating to the operation of the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour is held in Cambridge University Archives, see GBR/0265/UA/ ZOO 8, while material relating to Bateson's Provostship is held among the administrative records of King's College, see GBR/0272/KCAR 1.

Papers of Bateson’s contemporaries at the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour include papers of William Homan Thorpe, held at Cambridge University Library, Department of Archives and Modern Manuscripts, see GBR/0012/MS Add.8784, and papers of Robert Hinde, held at St John’s College, Cambridge.

Papers of William Bateson (the cousin of Patrick Bateson’s grandfather) are held held at Cambridge University Library, Department of Archives and Modern Manuscripts, see GBR/0012/MS Add.8634. Papers of Gregory Bateson (son of William Bateson) are held at the University of California Santa Cruz, MS.098.

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
West Road
Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom