Bowra, (Cecil) Maurice

Bowra (1898-1971, knighted 1951) was educated at Cheltenham College and New College, Oxford, where he was a contemporary of Harrod and one of his closest friends. He was fellow and tutor (1922-38) and warden (1938-70) at Wadham College, Oxford; a scholar in Greek literature, he was professor of poetry (1946-51), vice-chancellor of Oxford University (1951-54) and president of the British Academy (1958-62).

Of him, Harrod wrote that he was "the acknowledged leader of a circle of exceptianally brilliant undergraduates among whom only one, J. B. S. Haldane , could rival his range and none his wit and fluency". "Alic Smith [...] was in many ways his model as tutor", "while Gilbert Murray 's sense of style and attitude to scholarship [...] shaped his whole academic life".

Source: DNB ; www ; Harrod, "Sir Maurice Bowra. Classical Scholar who was a Brilliant Figure at Oxford", unsigned obituary in The Times, 5 July 1971, p. 14; C. M. Bowra, Memories 1898-1939 (1966).


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