Housman, Alfred Edward and Laurence


Housman, Alfred Edward and Laurence
(1859-1959)
   • Alfred Edward, the elder brother, 1859-1936
   Born in Fockbury, Shropshire, he was educated at Bromsgrove School and St. John's College, Oxford, where he gained first class honors in classics in 1879. He failed to obtain honors in literae humaniores; some say it was because of his romantic attachment to another student, Moses Jackson. Working in the London Patent Office he found time for classical study and contributed to several learned journals. He was professor of Latin at University College, London, from 1892 until 1911, when he became Kennedy Professor of Latin at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he lived until his death. His ashes were buried at St. Lawrence's Church, Ludlow, and a statue of him was erected in Bromsgrove High Street in 1985. He is one of the poets memorialized in the Poets' Window of Westminster Abbey. Some of his poetry publications: A Shropshire Lad, 1896. Last Poems, 1922. More Poems, 1936 (published by his brother). Some of his other poems: "Amelia Mixed the Mustard," "As Through the Wild Green Hills of Wyre," "Aunts and Nieces or Time and Space," "The African Lion," "The Deserter," "When I Was Oneand-Twenty."
   • Laurence, the younger brother, 1865-1959
   He was educated at Bromsgrove, did not go to university but studied art in London. During his early years he lived with his sister Clemence, an author and wood-engraver whose book The Were-Wolf (1896) he illustrated. He was art critic on the Manchester Guardian from 1895 to 1911, and while there he tried his hand at writing plays. His first, Bethlehem, was banned in 1902, and when run privately it cost him a lot of money. Several other plays were banned. Prunella, or Love in a Dutch Garden, escaped the censor and was moderately successful, as were Angels and Ministers (1921) and The Little Plays of St. Francis (1922). He wrote several successful novels and many stories for both children and adults, and published his autobiography, The Unexpected Years (1937). Some of his poetry publications: Green Arras, 1896. Spikenard, 1898. An Englishwoman's Love-Letters, 1900. Some of his poems: "A Dead Warrior," "All Fellows," "Comrades," "Farewell to Town," "The City of Sleep," "The Continuing City," "The Settlers," "The Two Loves."
   Sources: Chief Modern Poets of Britain and America. 5th edition. Gerald DeWitt Sanders and John Herbert Nelson, eds., Macmillan, 1970. Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite DVD, 2006. The Housman Society (http://www.housmansociety.co.uk/). The National Portrait Gallery (www.npg.org.uk). The Chatto Book of Nonsense Poetry. Hugh Haughton, ed. Chatto and Windus, 1988. The Collected Poems of A.E. Housman. Henry Holt, 1965. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Home Book of Modern Verse. Burton Egbert Stevenson, ed. Henry Holt, 1953. The World's Great Religious Poetry. Caroline Miles Hill, ed. Macmillan, 1954. What Cheer: An Anthology of American and British Humorous and Witty Verse. David McCord, ed. Coward-McCann, 1945.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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