Norman Alexander MacCaig OBE (14 November 1910 – 23 January 1996) was a Scottish poet and teacher. His poetry, in modern English, is known for its humour, simplicity of language and great popularity.
Norman Alexander MacCaig was born at 15 East London Street Edinburgh to Joan, née MacLeod (1879–1959) and Robert McCaig (1880–1950?), a chemist. His mother was from Scalpay and his father from Dumfriesshire and he was their fourth child and only son. He attended Royal High School, Edinburgh and in 1928 went to the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1932 with a degree in classics. He divided his time, for the rest of his life, between his native city and Assynt in the Scottish Highlands.
During the Second World War MacCaig registered as a conscientious objector, a move that many at the time criticised. Douglas Dunn has suggested that MacCaig's career later suffered as a result of his outspoken pacifism, although there is no evidence of this. For the early part of his working life, he was employed as a school teacher in primary schools. In 1967 he was appointed Fellow in Creative Writing at Edinburgh. He became a reader in poetry in 1970 at the University of Stirling. He spent his summer holidays in Achmelvich, and Inverkirkaig, near Lochinver...
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