The letters section of the Archive will be its first section. The letters will be mounted chronologically in chapters containing brief biographical introductions intended to set them in context and make them more understandable.
The letters have been given a uniform format:
Line one contains the name of the recipient and date of composition. In many cases a letter contains no date or only a partial date (e.g., Wednesday). In that case a probable date derived from a postmark or from internal evidence or from the context provided by other letters is placed in brackets. Questionable aspects of assigned dates are preceded by a question mark as [January ?12, 1892].
Line two contains the place where the letter was written and/or from which it was mailed in a single line with vertical rules denoting line divisions in the original.
Line three contains the salutation where one exists.
Lines four and following contain the body of the letter with Sharp's paragraphing preserved, where it can be determined, followed by a separate line (when separate in the original) containing the complimentary close and signature separated by a vertical rule (if the close and signature were separate lines in the original).
The body and signature are followed by one or more postscripts when they occur in the original.
Finally, the form of the original and its provenance are given in a separate line at lower left.
Obvious errors of spelling have been silently corrected. Errors of punctuation and grammar have been corrected only when necessary to attain clarity of the author's intention. Writing on margins that is marked as an insert has been placed within the body of the text at the point of intended insertion. Postscripts on margins have been placed at the close of the main body of the letters. Every effort has been made to attain a balance between authenticity and readability. In rare cases, the particular handling of a text has been described in a note.
The footnotes are and will remain a work in progress. Their intention is to provide information that will be useful to readers in understanding references in the letters and to provide information that will clarify points in the letters that would otherwise be unclear to the general reader. Given the multitude of people, places, literary and artistic works, and events mentioned in the letters, the process of annotation is an onerous one. It requires judgments about what is too much and what is not enough. Some notes have been left blank because efforts to track down the information have so far been unsuccessful. All notes are subject to expansion and revision as new information becomes available. This form of publication is particularly useful for the annotations because they can be viewed as works in progress. The editor will be grateful to readers for any information that improves their accuracy and completeness.
WS = William Sharp
FM = Fiona Macleod
EAS = Elizabeth A. Sharp
EWR = Edith Wingate Rinder
Mem = William Sharp (Fiona Macleod): A Memoir, Compiled by his wife, Elizabeth A. Sharp (New York: Duffield & Company, 1910)
The following abbreviations are used to describe the form of the original letter at the foot of each letter:
AD = autograph draft
ALS = autograph signed letter
ALCS = autograph lettercard signed
APS = autograph postcard signed
TL = typed letter
TLS = typed letter signed
To cite the Archive as a source used in a publication (print or electronic), please use the complete title of the Archive, its URL:
(http://ies.sas.ac.uk/research-projects/william-sharp-fiona-macleod-archive); and the date you accessed it, along with any other relevant documentation.
Here is an example:
Sharp, William, Letter to Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 28 July 1881 (ALS, University of British Columbia), The William Sharp Archive . Ed. William F. Halloran. 21 June 2005 (http://ies.sas.ac.uk/research-projects/william-sharp-fiona-macleod-archive).