The Hopkins Manuscript

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Dust jacket 1st edition, Victor Gollancz Ltd, 1939

The Hopkins Manuscript is a social-political dystopian novel written by R. C. Sherriff in 1939.[1] Originally titled An Ordinary Man, the novel was published under its present title by Victor Gollancz, then republished by The Macmillan Company in 1963, before being reprinted by Persephone Books in 2002.[2][3]

Written in a tense period, on the brink of World War, the novel describes how the nations of the world, bent on destroying each other, band together to meet a common catastrophe. It also describes that the capital of European Union is in Hague, European countries band together against Great Britain and while United Europe is fighting British Empire everybody overlooks empowerment of Selim the Liberator in the Middle East who finally conquers and destroys the western civilisation.

The story takes place in Notting Hill, west London, where the main character, Edgar Hopkins, writes his own narrative about a lunar catastrophe in which the moon collides with the Earth. The foreword takes the perspective of an academic society 1,000 years in the future finding the manuscript as an historical document. Edgar, an active member of London's prestigious Lunar Society, learns of the impending doom through the society's astronomical meetings, and writes his narrative on the unfolding events.[4]


  1. ^ FitzHerbert, Claudia (5 September 2009). "Endpaper" – via
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Publisher Gollancz: Books Published in 1939".
  4. ^ "Books: Moonstruck". Time. July 31, 1939.