Sterneana

This section of the Laurence Sterne Trust website will provide digital images of manuscripts and rare printed material relating to Sterne’s life and writings. Where appropriate this material will be fully annotated.

The first series of documents describes Sterne’s activities as a clergyman in Coxwold. It is currently planned to upload early biographies and obituaries; an account by a Grand Tourist of meeting Sterne in Italy, which contains unique details of Sterne’s physical appearance, manner of dress, and idiosyncratic behaviour; and details of an unrecorded dramatisation of Tristram Shandy, performed in North America early in the nineteenth century.

Key dates in Laurence Sterne’s Life

1595/6: birth of Richard Sterne (d.18 June 1683) who was elected Archbishop of York on 28 April 1664, having been Master of Jesus College, Cambridge (7 March 1634 – ejected March 1644; reinstated 1660). He established the finances of the … Read the rest of this entry »

Sterne in Italy

This is an annotated translation of an extract from the Grand Tour diary of Georg Heinrich von Berenhorst (1733-1814), the illegitimate son of Leopold I, Prince of Anhalt-Dessau. A rather unreliable German translation of the original manuscript, written in French, … Read the rest of this entry »

The first publication of ‘Tristram Shandy’

When exactly were the first two volumes of ‘The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman’ published? Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 16 March 1760

The offer of an Organ for Coxwold church. Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 23 March 1760

Sterne is nominated to the living of Coxwold. Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 1 June 1760

A letter containing ‘Meloncholy newse’. Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 20 July 1760

…the Church can Scarce Contain the Number of People Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 6 September 1761

…They have pul’d up my Seat in Church Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 20 September 1761

…a Scotch Ox which is to be Roasted Whole Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 16 May 1762

…Sterne gives him a good Character Read the rest of this entry »

Letter – 20 June 1762

…I am afraid he’l be a Continual plague to us —- Read the rest of this entry »