Key Information

Reference code





  • c1903-1995 (Creation)

Level of description



433 boxes (including 5 outsize), 5 posters, 16 framed and unframed pictures and paintings, one sculpture

Scope and content

Records of the magazine Adam International Review and its editor, Miron Grindea, 1941-1995, and associated papers dating back to c1903, consisting of a wide range of material dealing with aspects of British and European cultural activity, particularly since the 1930s, and relating to art, literature, music, literary criticism, and the history of ideas. The archive includes the Adam International Review , issues 152-499 (wanting 186, 210-211, 218, 224-228, 331-54), 1941, 1946-1988, and indexes; microfilm copies of nos 13-14, 65, 148-149, 151, and issues dating from 1936 and 1938; and published copies of Christopher Fry, 'Genius, Talent and Failure: the Brontes' (The Adam Lecture 1986); Yehudi Menuhin, 'Tolerance' (The Adam Lecture 1987); Frances Stern, 'A Concordance to Proust' (Adam Books, 1987); 'Miron Grindea 1909-1995: a Celebration'. Unpublished papers of the Review were created by or relate to many prominent writers, artists and musicians of the 20th century including Natalie Clifford Barney, Samuel Beckett, Max Beerbohm, Nicolas Bentley, Isaiah Berlin, Edmund Blunden, Agatha Christie, Jean Cocteau, Ivy Compton Burnett, Cyril Connolly, Benedetto Croce, Cecil Day-Lewis, Lawrence Durrell, T S Eliot, George Enescu, E M Forster, Christopher Fry, William Golding, Duncan Grant, Robert Graves, Graham Greene, L P Hartley, Storm Jameson, Augustus John, Arthur Koestler, F R Leavis, Rose Macaulay, Compton Mackenzie, Thomas Mann, Katherine Mansfield, Walter de la Mare, John Masefield, Somerset Maugham, Yehudi Menuhin, Arthur Miller, Henry Miller, Joan Miro, Henry Moore, Iris Murdoch, Pablo Picasso, Anthony Powell, J B Priestley, Marcel Proust, Herbert Read, Jean Rhys, Ralph Richardson, Vita Sackville-West, Jean Paul Sartre, Siegfried Sassoon, Ronald Searle, George Bernard Shaw, Georges Simenon, the Sitwell family, C P Snow, Stephen Spender, Frances Stern, August Strindberg, Dylan Thomas, Arnold Wesker, Angus Wilson, Stefan Zweig, and others. Other material relates to the management of the magazine and includes editorial material (notes, proofs, preparatory research material, and correspondence required for production of an issue) and papers relating to circulation. The material is varied in form and comprises correspondence, manuscripts, typescripts, proofs with author's and editor's corrections and printed documents, including poems, stories, and criticism, both published and rejected for publication; photographs; original drawings and illustrations; news cuttings and other ephemera such as programmes for events; tape recordings including the Adam lectures, 1985-1987; and interview transcripts.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Series relating to editorial matters, circulation, and cultural ephemera (Ref: KC/ADAM/EDIT, CIR, BOX) are likely to be substantially weeded in due course.

System of arrangement

One series comprises editions of the Adam International Review (Ref: Adam International Review). A series of files arranged in alphabetical order by name (Ref: KC/ADAM/FIL1-270) contains correspondence and other papers relating to individual artists and writers. Another series (Ref: KC/ADAM/FILB) has further material relating to George Enescu, Katherine Mansfield, Music, and Frances Stern. Other series (Ref: KC/ADAM/EDIT, CIR, BOX) contain material relating to editorial matters, circulation, and cultural ephemera (the latter arranged by decade). Other material comprises uncatalogued accessions.

General Information

Name of creator


Biographical history

Adam International Review was a literary magazine published in English and French, its title an acronym for Arts, Drama, Architecture and Music. The original periodical Adam , founded in 1929 in Bucharest, was by 1938 edited by Miron Grindea (born in Romania, 1909, d 1995). Educated at Bucharest University and the Sorbonne, he worked in Romania and Paris as a music and literary critic during the 1930s, and he and his wife Carola, a pianist, were members of Romania's artistic avant-garde. They settled in London in 1939, and in 1941 the first London issue (no 152), known as Adam International Review, appeared, including contributions from H G Wells, G B Shaw, Thomas Mann and Cecil Day-Lewis. However, wartime paper rationing caused the cessation of publication. The review reappeared in 1946. It provided a vehicle for expression for writers exiled from Nazi Europe. It covered literature, art and music, publishing English and French writers and translations of work by other European authors. Some issues dealt with a single subject and usually contained new material. Many contributions were secured without payment to the authors. Adam was subsidised at different times by various bodies, including the Arts Council. Numbers 455-467 (1985) were published in collaboration with King's College London. From 1985 an annual Adam lecture was held at King's College to mark its acquisition of the Adam archive. The magazine celebrated 500 issues in 1989. Grindea was awarded Prix de l'Academie Francaise, 1955, Lundquist Literary Prize, Sweden, 1965, Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur, 1974, the MBE in 1977, the OBE in 1986, and an Honorary DLitt degree from Kent, 1983, and was Commander, Order of Arts and Letters, France, 1985. In 1990 BBC2's Bookmark devoted a special programme to him. Grindea's own publications include Malta Calling (1943); Henry Wood , a symposium (1944); Jerusalem, a literary chronicle of 3000 years (1968), 2nd edition Jerusalem, the Holy City in literature , preface by Graham Greene (1982); Natalie Clifford Barney (1963); The London Library , a symposium (1978); and contributions to many periodicals and newspapers.

Custodial history

The archive of Adam International Review and Miron Grindea's personal library were purchased directly by King's College London with the help of various benefactors in 1984. The purchase was arranged by the Department of French (owing to an existing connection with Grindea), which initially sorted the archive prior to transfer to the College Archives. Further material was transferred after Grindea's death in 1995.

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of Reader's undertaking form, and appropriate provision of two forms of identification, to include one photographic ID.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied from open material for research purposes only.

Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archives.

Language of material

  • English
  • French

Script of material

Finding aids

The papers are partially catalogued. Typescript lists detailing 270 files held in 10 boxes (Ref: KC/ADAM/FIL) record the individual(s) to whom they relate. Typescript lists giving descriptions for individual items (Ref: KC/ADAM/DOC, MS, ILL, TAPE, PHO) do not reflect the arrangement of material but are sorted by type (non-manuscript documents, manuscripts, illustrations, tapes, photographs). In order to locate individual items described thus it is usually necessary to identify the file relating to the author or main individual concerned in the alphabetical sequence (Ref: KC/ADAM/FIL). It is consequently easiest initially to find information on particular individuals by retrieving their files from the alphabetical sequence. The descriptions are not indexed. Another series of files (Ref: KC/ADAM/FILB), totalling 76 boxes, is listed by box. Other material (Ref: KC/ADAM/EDIT, CIR, BOX), totalling 341 boxes, is box listed, but not catalogued in detail. Later accessions are uncatalogued.

Existence and location of originals

Off-campus collection

Please note: We require 7 days notice to retrieve this collection as part, or all of it, is held off-campus. Read more ›

Related materials

King's College London Archives, KAL/AD6/F11, contains information on the Adam International Review archive and its acquisition by King's College London. King's College Library holds the former library of the editor Miron Grindea on twentieth-century European literature, known as the Adam Collection and held in Special Collections.

Related descriptions

Publication note

Vanessa Louise Davies, 'Adam International Review, 1941-1985: a thematic and contextual study' (PhD, King's College London, 1987); Vanessa L Davies, Adam International Review 1941-1991: a Short Publishing History (Adam Archive Publications, King's College London, 1992).

Alternative identifier(s)

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People and Organisations

Genre access points

Rules and/or conventions used

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000.


Archivist's note

Compiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project. Source: lists at King's College London Archives; King's College London Archives, KAL/AD6/F11; Who's Who; Vanessa L Davies, Adam International Review 1941-1991: a Short Publishing History (Adam Archive Publications, King's College London, 1992); The Guardian, 31 Jan 1989, 26 Apr 1990.

Accession area

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