Le Carre gives literary archive to Oxford library

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LONDON (AP) - Spy novelist John le Carre said Thursday he is giving an archive of his books, personal papers and photographs to Oxford University’s renowned Bodleian Library.

The archive includes drafts and manuscripts of le Carre’s best known novels, including “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “The Tailor of Panama” and “The Constant Gardener.”

About 85 archive boxes have been delivered the library, and more papers, correspondence and documents will follow soon.

Le Carre _ the pen name of David Cornwell _ said he was delighted to hand over his works.

Oxford was Smiley’s spiritual home, as it is mine,” he said. “And while I have the greatest respect for American universities, the Bodleian is where I shall most happily rest.”

The character of George Smiley _ the eponymous spy master of “Smiley’s People” and other le Carre novels __ is said to have been inspired by an official at Lincoln College at Oxford, where the writer studied modern languages.

The Bodleian Library said it was grateful for the le Carre archive.

“It is compelling primary evidence of a major cultural contribution to a literary genre and will offer scholars important insights into his work,” said Richard Ovenden, keeper of special collections at the library.

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