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Biography of Evelyn Waugh

Photo of Evelyn Waugh

Evelyn Waugh was a twentieth century novelist.

When and Where was he Born?

28th October 1903, at 11 Hillfield Road, Hampstead, London, England. Christened Evelyn Arthur Waugh.

Family Background:

Evelyn Waugh was the second child of Arthur Waugh, a man of letters and publisher and Prudent Catherine Raban.

Education:

Lancing. Hertford College, Oxford.

Timeline of Evelyn Waugh:

1910: Wugh goes to Heath Mount preparatory school.

1917: He attends Lancing College in Sussex.

1922: He goes up to Hertford College, Oxford in January to read History.

1924: He leaves Oxford without taking his degree.

1925: He becomes a teacher at Arnold House School in Wales. This is an unhappy time and he attempts suicide by swimming out to sea but turns back after being stung by a jellyfish. He moves on to a school at Aston Clinton in Buckinghamshire.

1927: He is sacked from Aston Clinton School. He meets Evelyn Gardner for the first time.

1928: He is briefly apprenticed to a cabinet-maker then works as a journalist before he published his first novel, “Decline and Fall”. He marries Evelyn Gardner on 27th June 1928 at St. Paul’s Church, Portman Square, London.

1929: He goes on a Mediterranean cruise.

1930: He divorces Evelyn Gardner. He travels through Africa and converts to Roman Catholicism which was a major watershed in his life and his writing.

1933: He travels through South America.

1935: Waugh goes to Abyssinia reporting for the Daily Mail newspaper.

1936: He is divorced form Evelyn.

1937: He marries his second wife Laura Herbert on 17th April. They move to Piers Court, Stinchcombe, Gloucestershire.

1938: His daughter Teresa is born.

1939: His son Auberon is born. He joins the armed forces.

1940: The birth and death of daughter Mary. He is commissioned in the Royal Marines and becomes a special assistant to the commando leader Robert Laycock.

1941: Evelyn Waugh shows bravery during the fighting in Crete evacuating troops whilst under air attack.

1944: His daughter Harriet is born. He serves in Yugoslavia with Randolph Churchill, the son of Winston Churchill liaising with Marshall Tito’s Partisans.

1945: He returns to London and is demobbed.

1946: His son James is born.

1947: He visits the USA.

1948: He lectures extensively in the USA.

1950: His son Septimus is born.

1954: Waugh has a nervous breakdown during a voyage to Ceylon.

1955: He visits Jamaica.

1956: The family moves to Combe Florey, Somerset.

1958: Waugh travels through Africa.

When and Where did he Die?

10th April 1966, Combe Florey, Taunton, Somerset, England of a heart attack after attending a Sunday church service.

Age at Death:

62.

Written Works:

1932: “Black Mischief”.
1934: “A Handful of Dust.”
1935: “Biography of the Elizabethan Catholic martyr Edmund Campion.
1939: “Robbery Under Law” (Travel book).
1942: “Put Out More Flags”. “Work Suspended”.
1945: “Brideshead Revisited”.
1948: “The Loved One”.
1955: “Officers and Gentlemen”.
1957: “The Ordeal Of Gilbert Penfold”.
1961: “Unconditional Surrender”.
1963: “Basil Seal Rides Again”.
1964: “A Little Learning”. (Autobiography).
1976: “The Diaries of Evelyn Waugh”.

Marriages:

1. To Evelyn Gardner on 27th June 1928 at St. Paul’s Church, Portman Square, London. (Divorced 1936).
2. To Laura Herbert on 17th April 1937.

Site of Grave:

St. Peter and St. Paul’s Churchyard, Combe Florey, Somerset, England.

Places of Interest:

SOMERSET:

Combe Florey.

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