St. Paul's School


Born March 3, 1878, in London, Edward Thomas had his education at St. Paul's School and Lincoln College, Oxford University, from which he graduated in 1900 with a history degree. Having married Helen Noble in 1899 and with a baby son, Merfyn, to support, Thomas became a professional writer. In his brief 15-year career he produced over two dozen books and many dozens of reviews. He focused on local history and literary figures. His books dealt with such authors as George Borrow, William Cobbett, John Dyer, George Herbert, Richard Jefferies, John Keats, Christopher Marlowe, Walter Pater, and Algernon Charles Swinburne. As his family grew with the birth of daughters Bronwen (1902) and Myfanwy (1910), so did his financial problems. He intermittently fell ill from 1903 onward. Thomas only began writing poems in late 1914 after a visit from Robert Frost. A pseudonym Edward Eastaway, used in Six Poems (1916), enabled him to isolate poetry from his professional writing. In 1915 his two years of war service began when he joined the Artists' Rifles. After spending some months as a map-reading instructor at Hare Hall Camp in Romford, he became an officer cadet and was commissioned as Second Lieutenant, 244 Siege Battery, R. G. A., and volunteered for overseas duty in late 1916. Just before he left England he looked over the proofs of his contributions to An Annual of New Poetry. Thomas died from a shell explosion on April 9, 1917, at Ronville, just as the Arras offensive started. The diary he carried held a picture of Helen.

  • Eckert, Robert Paul. Edward Thomas, A Biography and a Bibliography (London: Dent, 1937). PR 6039 H55Z7 Robarts Library
  • Kirkham, Michael. The Imagination of Edward Thomas (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986). PR 6039 H55Z745 Robarts Library
  • Longley, E. "Thomas, (Philip) Edward (1878–1917)." Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Ed. H. C. G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. Oxford: OUP, 2004. Online ed. Ed. Lawrence Goldman. Oct. 2009.
  • Thomas, Edward. Six poems by Edward Eastaway ([Flansham, England]: J. Guthrie at the Pear Tree Press, [between 1916 and 1921]. end ovs T464 A155 1916b Fisher Rare Book Library
  • --. Poems (London: Selwyn & Blount, 1917). PR 6039 H55P6 Robarts Library
  • --. Last poems (London: Selwyn & Blount, 1918). PR 6039 H55L3 Robarts Library
  • --. Poems and Last Poems, ed. Edna Longley (London and Glasgow: Collins, 1973). PR 6039 H55 A17 York University Library
  • --. Collected Poems, ed. R. George Thomas (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1978). PR 6039 H55A17 1978 Robarts Library
  • --. Poems by Edward Thomas ("Edward Eastaway") with an introduction by Myfanwy Thomas and reproduction of a letter written by Edward Thomas (London: Department of Printed Books, Imperial War Museum, 1997). PR 6039 .H55A17 1997 Robarts Library
  • Thomas, R. George. Edward Thomas: A Portrait (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1985). PR 6039 .H55 Z89 Robarts Library

Born on March 18, 1840, William Cosmo Monkhouse was educated at St. Paul's School from 1848 to 1856. He earned his living at the Board of Trade, in which he worked his way up from clerk to Assistant Secretary of the Finance Department. Privately, Monkhouse was a man of letters: a poet and a critic of art and literature. He published five volumes of verse between 1865 and 1901. His first wife was Laura Keymer, and his second, with whom he had eight children, was Leonora Eliza Blount. He died on July 2, 1901.

  • D., A. [biography] The Dictionary of National Biography. Supplement: January 1901-December 1911. Ed. Sir Sidney Lee. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1920. II: 634-35.
  • Monkhouse, William Cosmo. Corn and Poppies. London: E. Mathews, 1890. H&SS A-4129 Robarts Library
  • --. The Christ upon the Hill: A Ballad. Etched by W. Stanc. London: Smith Elder & Co., 1895. LR 404 K3 British Library (presentation copy of 200)
  • --. A Dream of Idleness, and Other Poems. London: Edward Moxon, 1865. 11651.aa.19 British Library
  • --. Life of Leigh Hunt. London: W. Scott, 1893. PR 4813 M6 Robarts Library
  • --. Nonsense Rhymes. London: R. Brimley Johnson, n.d. Illustrated by Gilbert Chesterton. 12315.ccc.50 British Library end C458 Z5M65 1902 Fisher Rare Book Library
  • --. Pasiteles the Elder & Other Poems. London: R. Brimley Johnson, 1901. 011651.i.74 British Library
  • --. Turner. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle, & Rivington, 1882. ND 497 .T8M745 Royal Ontario Museum
Index to poems
  • Scott, Rosemary. "Barham, Richard Harris (1788-1845)." Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Ed. H. C. G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. Oxford: OUP, 2004.