Summary. We present N-body simulations of the collapse and violent relaxation of galaxies and of clusters of galaxies from flat and distorted sheets of stars or of galaxies. We discuss the density profiles, ellipticities, velocity dispersions and angnlar-momentum distributions of the final configurations. In this way we generate E4-E6 pseudo-galaxies, whose ellipticities generally increase outwards and whose flattenings are due to a third integral. A pseudo-galaxy which relaxed from a tri-axial configuration remained triaxial after the completion of its violent relaxation. Systems involving particles of different masses, including the Schecliter mass function, are analysed to see how two-body encounters might modify aspherical clusters of galaxies. We find that encounters leave the subsystem of the more massive particles more flattened than that of the less massive particles, whilst reducing the mean flattenings of the entire systems.