Draak collection donated to Utrecht University Library

Since 1996 Utrecht University Library houses part of the book collection of Maartje Draak (in Dutch only). In January 2022 her archive collection was added.

Respected researcher of King Arthur

Maartje Draak (1907-1995) was professor of Celtic and became known for her translations of Old Irish stories she published in the 1980s, in collaboration with her student Frida de Jonge. She was a respected researcher in the field of Celtic studies and the Middle-Dutch literature about King Arthur and his knights. She dedicated herself to promote international recognition of and contacts between female academics. In 1955 she became the first female member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences in the department of Literature. One of her students, prof. Wim Gerritsen, published her biography (article in Dutch only) in 2019.

Archive collection

After Draak’s death in 1995 her archive collection was entrusted to Frida de Jong, who divided the collection into thematic categories, put it into archival boxes and made a detailed inventory. The collection includes correspondence, travel journals, diaries, personal documens, lectures, notebooks, documents related to conferences, associations and publications. By special request of Utrecht researchers the university library has accepted the donation of the collection. In 2023 Celtic Studies at Utrecht University celebrates its 100th anniversary, and the Draak collection is of vital importance to the description of its history. In due course an inventory will be published in the Digitaal Repertorium (in Dutch only).