The Richard Burton Diaries
Richard Burton was once the highest-paid actor in Hollywood - but his personal diaries reveal a very different side to his public persona.

Recognised as an international film star, distinguished actor, and jet-set celebrity, he was as famous for his celebrated marriages to Elizabeth Taylor as he was for his stage and screen presence.

His handwritten diaries, which Richard Burton (born Richard Jenkins in 1925) began in 1939 and ended just before his death in 1984, were donated to Swansea University in 2005 by his wife, Sally Burton.

The diaries and other personal papers, known as The Richard Burton Collection, form a central part of the £1.2million Richard Burton Archives facility at the University’s Library, which was formally opened in April 2010.

Over the last four years, Chris Williams, Professor of Welsh History and Director of the Research Institute for Arts and Humanities, has painstakingly edited more than 450,000 words penned by Richard Burton.

The resulting 704-page book, in which entries appear in their original sequence, is published this month by Yale University Press.

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