Strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde : autograph manuscript signed.

Record ID: 
Accession number: 
MA 628
Stevenson, Robert Louis, 1850-1894, author.
[Bournemouth], undated [1885 September-October]
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan, 1909.
Curatorial Comments: 

This manuscript of Robert Louis Stevenson's novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is the copy sent to the publisher Charles Longman in late October 1885, about six weeks after Stevenson first conceived of the idea. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is composed of a series of accounts and texts that slowly reveal the story of Dr. Henry Jekyll's decision to create a separate body for himself, Edward Hyde, through which his baser instincts can be expressed, and the consequences of that decision. As in other tales of problematic births from Frankenstein to Jurassic Park, the monster, once out, begins to assert control over its creator.
The manuscript has been marked up, primarily in pencil, either by the compositors who set the type or by someone else (perhaps a managing editor) at the publishing house, Longmans, Green & Co., that published the first edition of the book on January 9, 1886.
The manuscript also contains Stevenson's edits, in some places quite extensive. Two sections in particular, one at the start of Henry Jekyll's statement and one at the end (pages 47 and 61), show Stevenson re-working significant passages of the book even in this semi-final stage of writing. In both instances, Stevenson complicates the distinction between the two poles that Jekyll and Hyde are supposed to represent, emphasizing the difficulty of telling one from another, or keeping them apart.
The Morgan's manuscript is not complete. The central chapters, covering the murder of Sir Danvers Carew and the denouement of Jekyll's experiment, have not survived. After Stevenson's death in 1894, the manuscript was owned by Isobel Strong, his stepdaughter; J. Pierpont Morgan bought it from her in 1909. Strong had given away several leaves, three of which made their way back to the Morgan Library in 1950s and '60s as the generous gifts of Edwin J. Beinecke.

1 item (33 pages), bound ; 33.6 cm

Date of writing identified in Dury (p. xix) and Swearingen (p. 98); probable location of writing inferred from Dury (p. xvi).
In 1951, Edwin J. Beinecke presented the Morgan Library with two missing leaves from this manuscript: p. 43 (MA 1383) and p. 52 (MA 1373); in 1960, Beinecke presented the Morgan with a third missing leaf, p. 47 (MA 2075). These three leaves have been inserted in the manuscript in the correct locations.


The final draft of the manuscript as sent to the printer, with some revisions and corrections. Written on the rectos of 33 leaves, paginated 1-8, 8A, 10-13, 43-62. The manuscript is lacking p. 9, 14-42 (equivalent to p. 21 and the second paragraph of p. 22, and p. 31-97 of the first printed edition). The verso of p. 43 (numbered 39) contains a canceled passage.

Housed in: 
Blue cloth drop-spine box (35.3 cm)
Red leather with gold and black tooling.
The bulk of the manuscript was purchased by Pierpont Morgan in 1909. Three missing leaves (p. 43, 47, 51) were given to the Morgan Library by Edwin J. Beinecke in 1951 and 1960.