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).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

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.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Grieve/Hugh MacDiarmid, Editor and Essayist', in The Edinburgh Companion to Hugh MacDiarmid, ed.
Donald Sinclair is another example of a writer whose work was appreciated in Gaelic and Scots circles alike--for example Ruaridh Erskine of Marr and Hugh MacDiarmid were admirers of his dramatic works.
(18) Lewis Grassic Gibbon, 'The Antique Scene', in Lewis Grassic Gibbon and Hugh MacDiarmid, Scottish Scene, or The Intelligent Man's Guide to Albyn (1934); reprinted in Valentina Bold (ed.), Smeddum: A Lewis Grassic Gibbon Anthology (Edinburgh: Canongate, 2001), p.
We need to open our eyes and minds, and see the glorious multiform colours of our country, just as Hugh MacDiarmid did as he describes the details of a Scottish hillside in September to the fool who sees "nothing but heather." "How marvellously descriptive!" he retorts, "And incomplete!" @LitWales
A particularly important example for Riach is Hugh MacDiarmid who "did not accept the status quo and ...
Although Hart derives his main concept of the synthetic vernacular from the poetics of Hugh MacDiarmid, he persuasively explains why the concept also applies to Basil Bunting, Edward Kamau Brathwaite, and Melvin Tolson.
The central figures discussed in Nations of Nothing But Poetry are Hugh MacDiarmid, Basil Bunting, Kamau Brathwaite, Melvin B.
Among the topics are the branch societies of the Highland Society of London, Scottish Gaelic in Argentina, Scottish Highlanders and First Nations, Hugh MacDiarmid and Sorley MacLean as correspondents and collaborators, media ecology for the Gaidhealtachd, the role of new media in Scotland's Gaelic digital service, and an introduction to Manx Gaelic.
Hugh MacDiarmid, who had been President and CEO of AECL for just six months when that hard decision was taken, was unapologetic in offering a rationale to the Standing Committee.
A leading figure in what has been called the Scottish Renaissance alongside Hugh MacDiarmid, (8) Young wrote poetry in what he called "Lallans," Robert Burns's term for the Scots language.
The other members of this celebrated set were Iain Crichton Smith, Sorley MacLean, Robert Garioch, Hugh MacDiarmid, Norman MacCaig and George Mackay Brown.
The title of the book is derived form a line in Ronald Stevenson's song cycle Border boyhood to texts by Hugh MacDiarmid. In many ways, Stevenson, both as a prolific composer and pianist, has been a throwback to an earlier music era--an era of pianistic virtuosity and transcription as propounded by Liszt and carried on by Godowsky, Busoni and Percy Grainger.