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Socratic Club posterThe Edwin W. Brown Collection

 

The Brown Collection is named for Dr. Edwin W. Brown of Indianapolis. Taylor University purchased his fine collection in 1997 and the collection is now housed in The Center for the Study of C.S. Lewis & Friends in the Zondervan Library.

The Brown Collection is quite extraordinary in scope and quality. It includes first editions (both British and American) of all of the books authored, edited, or with prefaces by C. S. Lewis. The Collection also includes some published essays and lectures by Lewis and two very rare Lewis manuscripts.

The Friends of C.S. Lewis are also represented in the Brown Collection. We have first and reprint editions of George MacDonald, first editions of Charles Williams, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Owen Barfield, several manuscripts, letters, contracts, and photographs.

The following are some of the treasures in the Brown Collection:

  • Clivi Hamiltonis Summae Metaphysics Contra Anthroposophos
    • The written discussion on philosophy between CS Lewis and Owen Barfield.  Lewis once referred to it as "The Great War" with Barfield.  Written when Lewis was an atheist and Barfield was involved in Anthroposophy, this document gives rare insight into both authors' developing philosophical thought.
  • Light
    • A manuscript of a version of the short story later published as "The Man Born Blind"First Editions
  • Hamlet Manuscript
    • George MacDonald took a volume of "Hamlet" and had it rebound with blue paper inserted between each page of the play.  Here he made his notes for his book "The Tragedie of Hamlet"
  • Hand-written letters from Charles Williams
  • MacDonald book contracts
  • Two collections of Lewis letters: to Jill Flewett Freud and to Mary Neylan
  • The dedicatory copy of "The George MacDonald Anthology" from Mary Neylan
  • Several George MacDonald books from the library of Arthur Greeves with notations by C.S. Lewis.

The collection is more valuable in its entirety than the individual parts alone. In addition, it provides enhanced educational opportunities for students and faculty at Taylor University.

The cultural, literary and religious aims of the collection can be expanded through the educational curriculum offerings of lectures and seminars. In fact, Taylor University reaches beyond the literary collection and brings C.S. Lewis scholars to the campus.