14 Facts About Edwin Muir


Edwin Muir CBE was a Scottish poet, novelist and translator.


Edwin Muir's life as a young man was a depressing experience, and involved a raft of unpleasant jobs in factories and offices, including working in a factory that turned bones into charcoal.


In 1919, Edwin Muir married Willa Anderson, and the couple moved to London.


About this, Edwin Muir wrote simply 'My marriage was the most fortunate event in my life'.


Edwin Muir would help her translate highly acclaimed English translations of Franz Kafka, Lion Feuchtwanger, Gerhart Hauptmann, Sholem Asch, Heinrich Mann, and Hermann Broch.


Between 1921 and 1923, Edwin Muir lived in Prague, Dresden, Italy, Salzburg and Vienna; he returned to the UK in 1924.


In 1939 in St Andrews, Edwin Muir had a religious experience and from then onwards thought of himself as Christian, seeing Christianity as being as revolutionary as socialism.


Edwin Muir returned to Britain in 1956 but died in 1959 at Swaffham Prior, Cambridgeshire, and was buried there.


Edwin Muir's wife wrote a memoir of their life together in 1967.


Edwin Muir lived for another eleven years and died on the Isle of Bute.


Edwin Muir came to regard his family's movement from Orkney to Glasgow as a movement from Eden to Hell.


Edwin Muir expressed his feeling that our deeds on Earth constitute "a myth which we act almost without knowing it".


Edwin Muir did not share in the modern attempts to deify poetry, or language, or even the human imagination.


Edwin Muir's triumph was less in the technological realm of communication than in the vastly more difficult realm of sensitivity, perception, wisdom, the things which he communicated.