New PDF release: A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography

By Norman

ISBN-10: 0333656016

ISBN-13: 9780333656013

ISBN-10: 1349245844

ISBN-13: 9781349245840

A.E. Housman (1859-1936) was once a poet of huge attractiveness and frequent impression: a Latin pupil of front rank, an outstanding prose stylist, a extraordinary author of comedian verse and, due to the big good fortune of A Shropshire Lad, one of many maximum and best-known poems within the English language, he grew to become a legend in his personal lifetime. Reissued to mark the centenary of the booklet of A Shropshire Lad, Norman Page's highly-acclaimed biography is considered the main whole account of Housman's lifestyles and occupation on hand. Drawing on quite a lot of resources, together with a lot unpublished fabric, Norman web page offers us with a desirable perception into Housman the poet, the student and the guy. `By some distance the simplest biography of Housman we now have ... ' - Andrew movement, occasions Literary Supplement

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Example text

Be that as it may, to Oxford he went. The obvious choice of college would have been Balliol, which led the field academically; but his father disapproved of Jowett's liberal theological position and would not permit him to try there. On 15 January 1877, according to Lucy Housman's diary, 'Alfred went to Oxford for the first time in his life'* and sat the scholarship examination at Corpus Christi College. He was unsuccessful; but in June he fared better at St John's College, carrying off a £ I 00 scholarship - the most valuable of several won in that year by pupils from his schoo!.

Ancient Greeks did not, however, quench the boy's thirst for heroworship, which found also a modern object. In 1923, in an 20 A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography uncharacteristically autobiographical conversation, Housman told A. C. Benson of his youthful adoration of Napoleon III, and that the FrancoPrussian War was a great shock and grief to him (then aged 11). He spoke with contempt of writers as opposed to men of action. * Alfred's earliest lessons had been from a governess (of whom, according to Laurence, he drew caricatures); but soon he was sent to a dame's school in Bromsgrove High Street, whence he proceeded at eleven to Bromsgrove School.

He got on well with his brothers and sisters and was a peacemaker in their squabbles - 'in a very quarrelsome family the only one with whom we never quarrelled'. * For the baby of the family, Herbert, he had a special affection; Herbert was unlike his brothers in being athletic rather than studious, winning cups at school rather than prizes; he was to become a soldier and to die in battle. Edward Housman had never taken his profession very seriously; he enjoyed his leisure and had grown accustomed to living off unearned income.

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A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography by Norman


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