A.E. Housman (1859-1936) was once a poet of large acceptance and frequent impression: a Latin pupil of front rank, a very good prose stylist, a awesome author of comedian verse and, because of the large 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 book of A Shropshire Lad, Norman Page's highly-acclaimed biography is considered the main entire account of Housman's lifestyles and occupation to be had. Drawing on a variety of resources, together with a lot unpublished fabric, Norman web page offers us with a desirable perception into Housman the poet, the coed and the guy. `By a long way the easiest biography of Housman we've ... ' - Andrew movement, instances Literary Supplement
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Extra resources for A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography
For Housman, it was the love affair of his life, and his unrequited devotion was still constant when Jackson died more than forty years later after a career of useful obscurity in the service of Empire. When Laurence Housman in his brother's later years visited him in Cambridge, he noticed a portrait hanging over the fireplace in his Trinity rooms and asked whose it was. ' A Cambridge girl who knew Housman well towards the end of his life wrote of him that he would not tolerate the idea that it was possible for a man truly to love more than one woman in his life; anyone who considered that he had done so had simply never really loved at all.
Father Gerard Manley Hopkins, on the other hand, who during Housman's fourth term moved from the Jesuit church in Farm Street, Mayfair, to the new parish church of St Aloysius, Oxford, saw the hand of change at work in the university city, and for the worse. It was eleven and a half years since Hopkins had completed his time at Balliol, and his saddened awareness of the changes that had taken place is recorded in the sonnet 'Duns Scotus's Oxford': the frame of 'neighbour-nature' in which was set the grey beauty of colleges and churches seemed to him now to be menaced by the 'base and brickish skirt' of suburban building.
A puff and cloud of smoke all over Turner's sky: and then the brush thrown down, and Ruskin confronting modern civilisation amidst a tempest of applause, which he always elicits now, as he has this term become immensely popular, his lectures being crowded, whereas of old he used to prophesy to empty benches. * In his second term he wrote a long letter, this time (and exceptionally) to his father, describing a debate of the Oxford Union and various sermons he had heard. He is evidently infected with political excitement - not a feature of his riper years, but still apparent in his account a few months later of the general election campaign; and his reports of the preaching of eminent divines show, as well as a predictable irreverence, a knack of impaling his victims with coolly observed satirical detail: the Bishop of Manchester 'commenced operations by blowing his nose, which is a rhetorical device he has apparently just found out, and which in the first ecstasy of novelty he uses with injudicious profusion'.
A. E. Housman: A Critical Biography by Norman