Sir Walter Scott

Standard Name: Scott, Sir Walter
Birth Name: Walter Scott
Titled: Sir Walter Scott
Nickname: The Great Unknown
Used Form: author of Kenilworth
The remarkable career of Walter Scott began with a period as a Romantic poet (the leading Romantic poet in terms of popularity) before he went on to achieve even greater popularity as a novelist, particularly for his historical fiction and Scottish national tales. His well-earned fame in both these genres of fiction has tended to create the impression that he originated them, whereas in fact women novelists had preceded him in each.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Anthologization Anna Gordon
Walter Scott included a selection of AG 's songs in Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border (of which the first two volumes appeared on this day).
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray et al., editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
Cultural formation Felicia Skene
FS was descended from Scottish aristocracy on her mother's side, with Jacobite connections; she was presumably white. Her parents belonged to the middle class. They travelled extensively and moved in distinguished circles; her father was...
Cultural formation George Eliot
She was acquainted with a multiplicity of sects, since many flourished in Warwickshire. From this time she deliberately dressed unfashionably, became censorious of the behaviour of others, and began reading more deeply in religion. Fear...
Cultural formation Jean Rhys
JR 's maternal great-grandfather, John Potter Lockhart of Old Jewry, London, acquired the Genever Plantation in 1824. The plantation was at times prosperous, but problems occurred as a result of natural disasters and labour disruptions...
Dedications Ann Taylor Gilbert
Young Josiah had the idea for this volume when he had been staying with the Taylors, and his father, Thomas Conder , was the book's publisher.
Armitage, Doris Mary. The Taylors of Ongar. W. Heffer and Sons.
The young authors dedicated it both to James Montgomery
Dedications Joanna Baillie
It was published with a dedication to Walter Scott . Produced as a melodrama at the Surrey Theatre in summer 1817, it had an excellent run of thirty-four nights.
Baillie, Joanna. The Collected Letters of Joanna Baillie. Editor Slagle, Judith Bailey, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press.
1: 168
Dedications Dorothea Primrose Campbell
In December 1813 DPC wrote to J. W. H. Payne , editor of The Ladies' Monthly Museum, to explain her dire financial circumstances and ask for his help in producing a second, London edition...
Education Doris Lessing
Before attending school and after she left, Doris educated herself by reading. Her parents possessed copies of the classics, like Scott , Dickens , and Kipling . She read widely in the nineteenth century—her favourites...
Education Harriet Beecher Stowe
HBS 's domestic training consisted of learning knitting, sewing, and Presbyterian and Episcopal church catechisms from an aunt and grandmother who were skilled at weaving and embroidery.
Hedrick, Joan. Harriet Beecher Stowe: A Life. Oxford University Press.
Her father did not allow novels in...
Education Matilda Betham-Edwards
Because of her mother's early death, MBE , she said later, was largely self-educated, her teachers being plenty of the best books.
Black, Helen C. Notable Women Authors of the Day. D. Bryce.
Apart from the family library, a half-guinea annual subscription to the Ipswich Mechanics' Institution
Education Charlotte Yonge
CY also learnt much on her own through reading widely in history, and classical and contemporary literature. She greatly admired Walter Scott .
Hayter, Alethea. Charlotte Yonge. Northcote House.
Education Mary Augusta Ward
On her arrival in Oxford, her father became to some extent interested in her education, enrolling her for music lessons with the organist James Taylor , and having her copy work for him. He provided...
Education Marjorie Bowen
To educate herself further, she read widely, setting herself literary exercises, writing verse imitating or dramatising Chaucer , Spenser , and Browning . However, she writes that at that time, I had read no really...
Education Toru Dutt
TD and Aru were briefly enrolled at a boarding school in Nice where they studied French.
Rao, Raja, and Toru Dutt. “Aru and Toru”. Ancient Ballads and Legends of Hindustan, Writers Workshop.
After moving to England they continued their studies and attended the Higher Lectures for Women series begun by Henry Sidgwick
Education Celia Moss
Little is known of CM 's education. Scholar Michael Galchinsky (who later wrote of her for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography) describes her family's household as secularizing . . . for their father...


12 March to 25 May 1644: In her husband's absence the royalist Countess...

National or international item

12 March to 25 May 1644

In her husband 's absence the royalist Countess of Derby , born a Huguenot Frenchwoman, successfully stood a siege at Lathom House in Lancashire (a towered and moated building).

February 1809: The Quarterly Review was founded....

Writing climate item

February 1809

The Quarterly Review was founded.

1813: The Shetland poet Margaret Chalmers (born...

Women writers item


The Shetland poetMargaret Chalmers (born at Lerwick in 1858 and left in poverty with her sisters and aged mother after the death of their brother William at the battle of Trafalgar) published her Poems...

By January 1821: Ballantyne's Novelists Library began publication;...

Writing climate item

By January 1821

Ballantyne's Novelists Library began publication; it was completed in 1824.

14-29 August 1822: George IV visited Edinburgh (first reigning...

National or international item

14-29 August 1822

George IV visited Edinburgh (first reigning monarch to do so since the 1630s); Sir Walter Scott laid on a lavish display of Scottish national pride.

Mid 1820s: Harsh economic conditions caused two-thirds...

Writing climate item

Mid 1820s

Harsh economic conditions caused two-thirds of established British publishing firms to crash: authors were ruined, like Sir Walter Scott , by the bankruptcy of Constable and Ballantyne in Edinburgh.

September 1826: The conservative Quarterly Review, discussing...

Writing climate item

September 1826

The conservative Quarterly Review, discussing Sir Walter Scott 's Lives of the Novelists, omitted all mention of any female writer.

1827: Constable's Miscellany, a prolific series...

Writing climate item


Constable's Miscellany, a prolific series of affordable books, was established.

3 May 1834: William Harrison Ainsworth published his...

Writing climate item

3 May 1834

William Harrison Ainsworth published his hugely successful first novel, Rookwood.

26 September 1835: Lucia di Lammermoor, probably the most famous...

Building item

26 September 1835

Lucia di Lammermoor, probably the most famous opera by Gaetano Donizetti , had its first performance at Naples; its first appearance in London came three years later.

9 August 1838: The Hampstead circulating library, intended...

Writing climate item

9 August 1838

The Hampstead circulating library, intended for the middling and lower ranks, which had stocked no novels on principle except those of Scott and Edgeworth , found these were borrowed so much more often than...

August-September 1846: William Makepeace Thackeray's novel Rebecca...

Writing climate item

August-September 1846

William Makepeace Thackeray 's novelRebecca and Rowena, a sequel to Scott 's Ivanhoe, was serialised in Fraser's Magazine.

1882: Walter Scott Publishing Company was established...

Writing climate item


Walter Scott Publishing CompanySir Walter Scott was established out of the bankrupt Tyne Publishing Company in Paternoster Square, London.

27 June 1894: Mudie's Circulating Library and bookseller...

Writing climate item

27 June 1894

Mudie's Circulating Library and bookseller W. H. Smith together announced they would not pay more than four shillings a volume for novels; this forced publishers to abandon triple-decker format, and quickly led to its replacement...

1904: Sir Walter Raleigh, author of the literary...

Writing climate item


Sir Walter Raleigh , author of the literary historyThe English Novel, 1894, moved from Glasgow to become the first Professor of English Literature at Oxford .


Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von. Dramatic Works of Goethe. Translators Swanwick, Anna and Sir Walter Scott, H. G. Bohn, 1851.
Grant, Douglas et al. “Introduction”. Private Letters of the Seventeenth Century, Clarendon Press, 1947, pp. 7-54.
Scott, Sir Walter. Ivanhoe. A. Constable, 1820.
Scott, Sir Walter. Kenilworth. A. Constable, 1821.
Scott, Sir Walter. Marmion. A. Constable; W. Miller and J. Murray, 1808.
Scott, Sir Walter. Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border. T. Cadell, Jun. and W. Davies; Longman and Rees, 1803.
Scott, Sir Walter. “Papers of Sir Walter Scott”. MSS 3278. 102, 3888.20, 3890. 89, 208, 261, National Library of Scotland, 1817.
Scott, Sir Walter et al. Private Letters of the Seventeenth Century. Clarendon, 1947.
Scott, Sir Walter. St. Ronan’s Well. A. Constable; Hurst, Robinson, 1824.
Scott, Sir Walter. Tales of My Landlord, Second Series. A. Constable, 1818.
Scott, Sir Walter. Tales of My Landlord, Third Series. A. Constable, 1819.
Scott, Sir Walter. The Journal of Sir Walter Scott. Editor Anderson, W. E. K., Clarendon, 1972.
Scott, Sir Walter. The Lady of the Lake. J. Ballantyne; Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme, and W. Miller, 1810.
Scott, Sir Walter. The Lay of the Last Minstrel. Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme; A. Constable, 1805.
Scott, Sir Walter. The Letters of Sir Walter Scott. Editor Grierson, Sir Herbert John Clifford, Constable, 1937.
Seward, Anna. The Poetical Works of Anna Seward. Editor Scott, Sir Walter, J. Ballantyne, 1810.
Scott, Sir Walter. Waverley. A. Constable; Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme and Brown.
Scott, Sir Walter. Waverley. Editor Lamont, Claire, Oxford University Press, 1986.