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MS Thr 603

Karl, Charles. Charles Karl costume designs, undated: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: b
Call No.: MS Thr 603
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Karl, Charles.
Title: Charles Karl costume designs,
Date(s): undated.
Quantity: 1 collection (1 linear foot (2 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Watercolor costume design drawings for Romeo and Juliet, Clarissa, The Gypsy Earl, Sir Roger de Coverley, and Under the red robe by designer Charles Karl for Nathan's, a London costume house, with a few designs by Johnston Forbes-Robertson.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

2003MT-275-279. Purchase from Lisa Cox, London; received: 1997 July.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Bonnie B. Salt and Irina Klyagin

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

Charles Karl Costume Designs, undated (MS Thr 603). Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

Charles Karl was the in-house costume designer from 1885 to 1934 for L. & H. Nathan Ltd. (or Nathan's), one of the big costume houses of London, England, and one of the most prolific theater designers of the time. Sir Johnston Forbes-Robertson (1853-1937) was a British actor and stage-manager, and was originally trained as an artist.


Arranged into the following series:

Scope and Contents

Circa 100 original watercolor, ink, pen, and pencil costume design drawings for productions of Romeo and Juliet, Clarissa, The Gypsy Earl, Sir Roger de Coverley, and Under the red robe. Designs for Romeo and Juliet are in two distinct drawing styles. Most are by Charles Karl, but fourteen designs are by Sir Johnston Forbes-Robertson. The majority of these drawings are 25 x 18 cm and smaller. Some of these sketches are stamped on verso: "L. & H. Nathan Ltd., 143, Drury Lane, W.C.2. TEM 3671."

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