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John Desmond Bernal: Scientific and Personal Papers

Reference Code: GBR/0012/MS Add.8287

Scope and Contents

A. Scientific Writings (24 boxes) 1.1-1.2. Books; 2.1-2.10. Contributions to books; 3.1-3.225. Periodicals; 4.1-4.60. Unpublished writings. B. Non-scientific Writings (33 boxes) 1.1-1.12. Books; 2.1-2.21. Contributions to books; 3.1-3.392. Periodicals; 4.1-4.115. Unpublished writings; 5.1-5.69. Broadcasts. C. Birkbeck College (1 box) 1-11. Correspondence, photographs, visitor's books, lectures, annual reports, etc. D. War (2 boxes) 1-13. Diaries, correspondence, photographs, maps, reports, notes, etc. E. Peace (8 boxes) 1-17. Correspondence and papers dealing with various countries; congresses and meetings; World Peace Council; conferences; press; and other papers. F. Science Policy (2 boxes) 1-14. Correspondence and papers. G. Special Activities (1 box) 1.1-1.5. Ghana, University Education; 2.1-2.7. Meteorite Research; 3. Crystal Data Centre. H. Scientific Organisations (6 boxes) 1-33. Papers of organisations to which Bernal belonged or was closely associated. I. Non-scientific Organisations (3 boxes) 1-47. Papers of organisations to which Bernal belonged or to which he was closely associated. J. Correspondence (9 boxes) 1-269. Correspondence with individuals and with organisations to which Bernal did not belong. K. Publishers (1 box) 1-35. Correspondence. L. Meetings and Visits (5 boxes) 1-87. Correspondence concerning the organisation of meetings and visits. M. Scientific Notes and Ideas (2 boxes) 1-24. Notes found at Birkbeck and among other papers, arranged alphabetically by topic. N. Non-scientific Notes and Ideas (2 boxes) 1-12. Notes arranged alphabetically by topic where possible. O. Personal (10 boxes) 1-24. Biographical material, family letters, last illness, greetings, certificates, diaries, and miscellaneous other material. P. Material collected after 15.9.1971 (3 boxes) 1-17. Correspondence; obituaries; papers of Anita Rimel, Bernal's P.A., 1940s-1969; and other material. Q. Miscellaneous 1-4. Scrolls (7); analysis of a Picasso drawing (1 envelope); the 1948 plans of Riley House (1 packet); and an album containing press cuttings (1 volume). R. Restricted material (6 boxes)


  • 1950 (Circa)


Conditions Governing Access

Section R is closed to readers until 2021.


118 archive box(es) (118 boxes)

8 rolled item(s) (8 rolls)

2 volume(s) (2 volumes)

1 bundle(s) (1 packet)

1 envelope(s) (1 envelope)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Presented by Mrs Eileen Bernal and deposited on permanent loan by the Governors of Birkbeck College, London, 1972-1973 and 1979.

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

The UK Archival Thesaurus has been integrated with our catalogue, thanks to Kings College London and the AIM25 project for their support with this.