Mervyn Peake

Mervyn Peake

Author (1911 - 1968)

Born of British parents in China in 1911, Mervyn Peake was an acclaimed writer, artist, poet and illustrator. He is best known for his Gormenghast books (three works conceived as part of a cycle, the completion of which was halted by his death). Amazingly, a fourth book in the series called Titus Awakes, written by Peake’s widow, Maeve Gilmore from detailed notes left by the author, was recently discovered by Peake’s granddaughter in the attic of their family home.

2011 marked the centenary of Mervyn Peake’s birth. PFD celebrated the occasion with new editions of his work (with specially commissioned introductions and never before published illustrations), exhibitions and films.



The White Chief of the Unzimbooboo Kaffirs (1921)
Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor (1939)
Shapes and Sounds (1941)
Rhymes without Reason (1944)
Titus Groan (1946)
The Craft of the Lead Pencil (1946)
Letters from a Lost Uncle (from Polar Regions) (1948)
Drawings by Mervyn Peake (1949)
Gormenghast (1950)
The Glassblowers (1950)
Mr Pye (1953)
Figures of Speech (1954)
Titus Alone (1959)
The Rhyme of the Flying Bomb (1962)
Poems and Drawings (1965)
A Reverie of Bone and other Poems (1967)
Selected Poems (1972)
A Book of Nonsense (1972)
The Drawings of Mervyn Peake (1974)
Mervyn Peake: Writings and Drawings (1974)
Twelve Poems (1975)
Boy in Darkness (1976)
Peake’s Progress (1978)
Ten Poems (1993)
Eleven Poems (1995)
The Cave (1996)
Boy in Darkness and other stories (2007)
Collected Poems (2008)


Illustrated Books

Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor (by himself) (1939)
Ride a Cock Horse and Other Nursery Rhymes (1940)
Hunting of the Snark (by Lewis Carroll)
Alice in Wonderland (by Lewis Carroll)
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (by Samuel Taylor Coleridge)
Household Tales (by the Brothers Grimm)
All This and Bevin Too (by Quentin Crisp)
Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (by Robert Louis Stevenson)
Treasure Island (by Robert Louis Stevenson)
Droll Stories (by Balzac) (1961)
The Rhyme of the Flying Bomb (by himself) (1962)
Titus Groan, Gormenghast and Titus Alone (by himself; several editions include an abundance of illustrations, on plates in the centre and/or distributed through the text)