Biography Andrew Lang

Andrew Lang

photo of Andrew Lang
  • Time Period1844 - 1912
  • Place
  • CountryScotland

Poet Biography

Andrew Lang was the son of the Sheriff-Clerk of Selkirkshire, and was born in Selkirk, Scotland, on 31 March 1844. He was educated at Edinburgh Academy and the Univerisites of St. Andrews and Glasgow, and won a Snell Exhibition to Balliol College, Oxford. He graduated with a first in Greats in 1868 and became a Fellow of Merton College, researching in anthropology there until 1874. At Oxford he was associated with the Rondelier group of poets.

He went to London in 1875 and lived there for most of his life, spending his winters in St. Andrews in later years. He married Leonore Blanche Alleyne on 17 April 1875.

He became one of the best-known journalists of his day, writing leaders for The Daily News and a column called "At the Sign of the Ship" for Longman's Magazine. His friends included Robert Louis Stevenson (whom he first met while they were both invalids on the Riviera) and W. E. Henley, who called him "the divine amateur". As a critic he was hostile to the novels of Henry James (1843-1916) and Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), but was one of the first to recognise the talent of George Douglas Brown. He died on 20 July 1912.