After obtaining his B. A. at Oxford University and his M.A. at Aberdeen University, Knox enlisted in June 1916 with the 4th Gordon Highlanders and served in World War I as Lance-Corporal. He arrived in France in December 1916 and went on to fight in the battles of the Somme (1916), Arras (1917), Ypres (1917), and Arras (1918). As a Second Lieutenant, he served in the 3rd and 44th Mortar Battery from August 1917. He was promoted to Lieutenant in January 1918 and Captain in January 1918. That March he was gassed and taken prisoner near Monchy le Preux. Sometime professor at Aberdeen University, and Columbia University, he began his career as Assistant Professor, Glasgow University, in 1912-13, and Professor of English, University of Calcutta, from 1913 to 1916. Prevented by his war injuries from returning to Calcutta, he spent some time teaching at the University of Leeds and then came to Toronto as Associate Professor of English at University College in 1920. His career balanced teaching and research. Although the only publication he acknowledged in his Who's Who entry was "Professor Alexander," which came out in The Varsity on December 17, 1926, the delightful farewell poem he wrote for the farewell dinner at Hart House, he was a well-known editor of Christopher Marlowe and Ben Jonson. He served as the first Chairman of the Graduate Department of English (1938-1944). From the early 1930s until his retirement in 1957, Knox chaired the Representative Poetry committee of the Department. He lived at 44 Avoca Ave. in Toronto and died in 1975.



  • Marlowe, Christopher. Edward the Second. Ed. R.S. Knox. London: Methuen, 1923. PR 2665 A2K6 Robarts Library
  • Jonson, Ben. Every man in his humour. Ed. R.S. Knox. 2nd ednLondon: Methuen, 1949. . PR 2613 A15 1949 Robarts Library
  • Marlowe, Christopher. The tragical history of Doctor Faustus. Ed. R.S. Knox. 4th edn. London: Methuen, 1950 . PR 2664 A1 1950A Robarts Library


  • The Canadian Who's Who. Vol. V, 1949-51 (Toronto: Trans-Canada Press)
  • Clippings file, University Archives. A73-0026/209 (45).
  • Harris, Robin S. English Studies at Toronto: A History. Foreword by Northrop Frye. University of Toronto: Governing Council, 1988. PR 53 T67H37 Robarts Library