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John Roberts: Copies of his letters to Francis Hindes Groome, scholar of Gypsy life

Reference Code: GBR/0012/MS Add.8418

Scope and Contents

A typescript copy, made by R.A.S. Macfie of letters written to F.H. Groome with manuscript annotations. There are 201 numbered pages, of which the last 17 are blank. The letters are from John Roberts, with the exception of the final letter, written by Groome's mother-in-law. The script includes early examples of Welsh Romani [Romany], for which there are 'hasty, unstudied translations' made by Macfie in September 1926.


  • Creation: 1876-1880 (circa. Date of transcript: 1907)


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 volume(s)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Presented by R.A.S. Macfie, 1926.

Related Materials

The original letters are held in the archive of the Gypsy Lore Society, University of Liverpool Special Collections and Archives: GLS D/2/5 - Pre-publication material. Letters by John Roberts - 1877-80; 1932-1933.


The letters were printed by Miss Dora Esther Yates in 'The Welsh Outlook', vol. 20, no. iii (March 1933). Groome printed extracts in his article on 'Gipsies' in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, 9th edition (1879), and in his book 'In gipsy tents' (1880).
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

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