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Esperanto Collection

This collection of around 200 books, periodicals, and manuscripts was presented to the Turnbull Library by George Gordon of Christchurch in 1942 for the use of esperantists. Additional books were donated by Bertram Potts in December 1980. The collection is held in the Turnbull Named Collections but is as yet uncatalogued.

The Esperanto Society was founded in Auckland in 1904 as the New Zealand Esperanto Society, but with the growth of other clubs it became the Auckland Esperanto Society and the national association was set up in 1910. It went into recess in 1915 but was revived in 1929, when it moved to Wellington. The society published The Bulletin of the New Zealand Esperanto Association (later The New Zealand Esperantist and then Nov-Zelanda Esperantisto) from August 1929 to December 1992.

Covers of two Esperanto-language books, Hamleto and Printempo de Morto.
L-R: Tradukis Llƶamenhof, Hamleto: W. Shakespeare, 1964; Lajos Zilahy, Printempo de morto, 1947.

It was superseded by the joint Australian/New Zealand publication Esperanto sub la Suda Kruco (‘Esperanto under the Southern Cross’) in January 1993, which is still published quarterly. The society also publishes an occasional newsletter called La Argenta Filiko (a literal translation of ‘Silver Fern’) which supplements the bi-national publication with local New Zealand news.

Related manuscripts

George Gordon Esperanto papers

Correspondence of the Esperanto Society, including that of Bertram Potts in his official capacity as president of the society | Folder 2 | Folder 3

Access items in this collection

The items in the Esperanto Collection are not listed on the Library’s online catalogue. A card shelf list exists for the Gordon donation and may be consulted by onsite clients; the Potts donation is uncatalogued. To view items in this collection, contact the Curator Rare Books and Fine Printing by using the Ask a Librarian form.

Cover of an Esperanto-language translate of the The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen, illustrated with a blonde mermaid.
Hans Christian Andersen, La Marvirineto, 1962.