Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Costa, Margaret Jull mss., 1980–2009, consist of the papers of Margaret Jull Costa, one of the most important literary translators of her time. Her major translations of Portuguese and Spanish fiction and poetry include the works of Nobel Prize winner José Saramago, Eça de Queiroz, Fernando Pessoa, Javier Marías and José Régio. After leaving school at 18, Costa worked as a secretary in London and spent her summers in Spain, where she learned Spanish. At age 23 she took a degree in Spanish and Portuguese at Bristol University, learning Portuguese from scratch. She later lived in Portugal for two years. Over the course of her career, she has won many awards, including the Portuguese Translation Prize in 1992 for The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa, the 1997 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award (with the author) for Javier Marias's A Heart So White, and the 2000 Weidenfeld Translation Prize for her translation of Saramago's All the Names. Her translation of The Maias by Eça de Queiroz was awarded both the 2008 PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Prize and the 2008 Oxford Weidenfeld Translation Prize, the only translation prizes open to books from all languages and periods on the two sides of the Atlantic.

The collection includes correspondence, revised drafts, proofs, reviews, and other related material.

Acquired: 2008–

Collection size: 1,744 items

NOTE: Access to this collection requires advance notice. Please contact the Curator of Manuscripts for additional information.

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.