Christopher Murray Grieve, known by his pen name Hugh MacDiarmid (11 August 1892 – 9 September 1978) was a Scottish poet.
He was instrumental in creating a Scottish version of modernism and was a leading light in the Scottish Renaissance of the 20th century. Unusually for a first generation modernist, he was a communist. Much of MacDiarmid's political life, however, was spent advancing the cause of Scottish nationalism. He wrote both in English and in literary Scots (often referred to as Lallans).
MacDiarmid was born Christopher Murray Grieve in 1892, in the Scottish Border town of Langholm. His father was a postman; his family lived above the town library, giving MacDiarmid access to books from an early age. After leaving school in 1910, he worked as a journalist for five years, before serving in the Royal Army Medical Corps in Salonica, Greece and France during the First World War. After the war, he married and returned to journalism.
MacDiarmid's first book, Annals of the Five Senses, was a mixture of prose and poetry written in English, and was published in 1923 while MacDiarmid was living in Montrose. At about this time MacDiarmid turned to Scots for a series of books, culminating in what is probably his best known work, the book-length A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle. This poem is widely regarded as one of the most important long poems in 20th-century Scottish literature. After that, he published several books containing poems in both English and Scots...
Quotes by Hugh MacDiarmid
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