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 recognition and common impression: a Latin pupil of front rank, an outstanding prose stylist, a impressive author of comedian verse and, due to the big luck 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 ebook of A Shropshire Lad, Norman Page's highly-acclaimed biography is thought of as the main whole account of Housman's lifestyles and profession to be had. Drawing on a variety of assets, together with a lot unpublished fabric, Norman web page offers us with a desirable perception into Housman the poet, the student and the fellow. `By a long way the simplest biography of Housman now we have ... ' - Andrew movement, occasions Literary Supplement

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Example text

Courage, staunchness and vitality were certainly in demand; as for the tyranny, it does not seem to have prevented Laurence and the others from going their own way when the time came. It is only fair to say that she seems to have made a good job of the demanding role of stepmother, and Alfred's relationship with her was a happy one. Since the autumn before his mother's death he had been a pupil at Bromsgrove School. Before his second marriage Edward Housman had moved his family back to Fockbury - not to the old home where Alfred had been born, but to Fockbury House (also known as The Clock House), an attractive seventeenth-century building demolished in 1976.

E. Housman: A Critical Biography retained a formality that makes the students of 1880 and the 1990s seem like different species. Sir Charles Oman, who went up to New College in 1878, recalled that 'on Sunday no self-respecting man would have dreamed of appearing in anything but a black coat and tall hat', and 'whiskers were largely worn', the favourite style being the mutton-chop. * In the extensive gardens of St John's College, archery was very popular. But even Oxford, after energetic resistance - the railway, for instance, proposed in the thirties, had been held off until the forties - was at last yielding to the nineteenth-century spirit of change.

As if to humanize a family almost too respectable for comfort, the Housmans occasionally found themselves harbouring a black sheep. Alfred's great-uncle William had abandoned his wife and children and run away to America with an actress; his uncle Thomas had been 'caught in his youth leaving the nanny's bedroom', * and after this enterprising start had never looked back. Edward Housman, Alfred's father, thus found himself, although the second son, in effect the head of the clan. He qualified as a solicitor, wooed and won Sarah Jane Williams of Woodchester, married her on 17 June 1858, and took her to live at Valley House, Fockbury, a Georgian house near his parents' home.

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A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography by Norman


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