Hugh MacDiarmid

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MacDiarmid, Hugh

(məkdûr`mĭd, –mĭt), pseud. of

Christopher Murray Grieve,

1892–1978, Scottish poet and critic, b. Langholm, Dumfrieshire. Passionately devoted to Communism and to Scottish independence from England, he was a founder of the Scottish Nationalist Party in 1928. He was the core figure in the "Scottish renaissance" of the interwar years. Among his many works are At the Sign of the Thistle (1934), essays; A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle (1962, rev. ed. 1971), a long poem castigating his fellow Scots; Collected Poems (1962), More Collected Poems (1971), and The Socialist Poems (1978). MacDiarmid was a masterful poet in both English and Scots, which he revived as a modern literary language.


See his autobiography, Lucky Poet (1943, rev. ed. 1972); studies by D. Glen (1972), A. C. Davis and P. C. Scott (1980).

Macdiarmid, Hugh


(pen name of Christopher Murray Grieve). Born Aug. 11, 1892, in Langholm, Dumfriesshire. Scottish poet, critic, and translator. Member of the Communist Party of Great Britain.

Macdiarmid’s first collection of poems was A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle (1926). It was followed by First Hymn to Lenin (1931), Second Hymn to Lenin (1935), and The Battle Continues (1957). Macdiarmid is one of the leaders of the “Renaissance” in Scottish poetry; in his poetry he celebrates the natural beauties of his native country, its people, and its history. He is a fighter for peace and has written poems about the participants in the National Revolutionary War in Spain (1936-39). Macdiarmid is a collector and researcher of Scottish folk poetry.


The Company I’ve Kept: Essays in Autobiography. London, 1966.
The Uncanny Scot: A Selection of Prose. [London, 1968.]
Selected Essays. London [1969].
Selected Poems. Harmondsworth, 1970.
Lucky Poet. London, 1972.
In Russian translation:
“O Lenine.” Internatsional–naia literatura, 1939, no. 1.


Kettl, A. “Angliiskaia literatura v 1955 g.” Inostrannaia literatura, 1956, no. 4.
Zhukov, D. “Postoianstvo.” Inostrannaia literatura, 1963, no. 5.
Buthlay, K. Hugh MacDiarmid. London, 1964.
Glenn, D. Hugh MacDiarmid and the Scottish Renaissance. London, 1964.
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