Archer, William,1856–1924, English author, critic, and translator, b. Scotland. Throughout his life he worked as drama critic on several London newspapers. He influenced the direction of English and American drama through his active interest in the work of the great Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen. He translated Ibsen's Pillars of Society, and largely through his efforts the play was the first Ibsen play to be produced (1880) in London. Archer's writings include Masks or Faces (1888), The Old Drama and the New (1923), and several plays, including the highly successful melodrama The Green Goddess (1923).
See biography by his brother, Charles Archer (1931).