Paul Elmer More (December 12, 1864 – March 9, 1937) was an American journalist, critic, essayist and Christian apologist.
Paul Elmer More, the son of Enoch Anson and Katherine Hay Elmer, was born in St. Louis, Missouri. He was educated at Washington University in St. Louis and Harvard University. More taught Sanskrit at Harvard (1894-1895) and Bryn Mawr (1895-1897).
After his short career as an academic, he worked as an literary editor on The Independent, the New York Evening Post and The Nation. He started on his Shelburne Essays in 1904; they were to run to 11 published volumes, drawing on his periodical writing, and were followed later by the New Shelburne Essays, in three volumes from 1928.
In his literary criticism, More generally upheld the classical English authors who display, as he put it, a "deep-rooted sense of moral responsibility"—Shakespeare, Johnson, Trollope, Newman—while also accepting those lusty writers of France and America who cannot help but be a little too honest. As Francis X. Duggan notes, "the immorality More most objects to, the most serious offence an artist can commit, is not the obvious one of obscenity or suggestiveness, but a falsification of human nature, the denial of moral responsibility".
He wrote several books after his retirement from journalism, including Platonism (1917); The Religion of Plato (1921); Hellenistic Philosophies (1923); and his last published work, the autobiographical Pages from an Oxford Diary (1937). His Greek Tradition, 5 vols. (1917–27), is generally thought to be his best work.
During the last 15 years of his life, More wrote several books of Christian apologetics, including The Christ of the New Testament (1924), Christ the Word (1927), and The Catholic Faith (1931). As Byron C. Lambert notes, "More's final mission was profoundly religious and what he wanted to leave to the world"...
Quotes by Paul Elmer More
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