George Bernard Shaw

Standard Name: Shaw, George Bernard
Used Form: G. B. Shaw
GBS was a drama critic who called for reform of theatrical practice, and a dramatist who attached to his plays on publication, lengthy prefaces expounding the social and dramatic issues opened by the play itself. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1925. The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography calls him a polemicist, and says that much of the drama of his time and after was indirectly in his debt for his creation of a drama of moral passion and of intellectual conflict and debate.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray et al., editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Characters Florence Farr
The Dancing Faun combines elements of melodrama, social realism, and comedy of manners.Grace Travers falls victim to her husband George's schemes to make a fortune by regaining entry into high society through deception and blackmail...
Cultural formation Florence Farr
FF grew up in a well-to-do, professional, English family that gave her access to a good education and exposed her to ideas of social reform. Bernard Shaw later commented that her privileged upbringing dulled her...
Cultural formation Amber Reeves
Born a New Zealander, she clearly regarded herself later in life as English. Her parents were highly educated professionals. Her mother was a suffragist, and both parents became members of the Fabian Society (founded three...
Cultural formation Annie Besant
In the course of her life, AB explored many facets of religion and politics. Early in her life she entertained a passionate Christian devotion and was inspired by the idea of sacrifice, even martyrdom. She...
death Beatrice Webb
Her body was cremated and buried at Passfield Corner, until at Bernard Shaw 's somewhat incongruous suggestion, the ashes of both Webbs were re-buried together in Politicians' Corner, Westminster Abbey, on 12 December 1947...
Education Muriel Box
MB early learned to read for herself (with some help from Reading Without Tears, a mid-Victorian textbook by Favell Lee Bevan, later Mrs Mortimer ) because her parents were often too busy to satisfy...
Education Olivia Manning
At home Olivia was encouraged to love poetry, learned to read by the time she was four, and was later subjected to piano lessons which taught her nothing. As a teenager and thinking of herself...
Education Emma Frances Brooke
The school, which was founded this year by Beatrice and Sidney Webb , Graham Wallas , and George Bernard Shaw , focused on the study of inequalities and poverty issues with the aim of improving...
Education Viola Tree
In 1911 Bernard Shaw , who was an opera critic as well as a playwright, and a Tree family friend (his donations were crucial to the success of Royal Academy of Dramatic Art ), wrote...
Education Meiling Jin
She was saved by the public Children's Library. She read omnivorously, beginning with the Dr Doolittle books (Hugh Lofting ) and fairy stories but missing out on Enid Blyton (who was kept locked away)...
Education Margaret Drabble
MD attended Mount School, York, a Quaker boarding school where her mother had taught English.
Todd, Janet, editor. Dictionary of British Women Writers. Routledge.
While there she acted the role of Bernard Shaw 's St Joan in a production by the Mount's brother school.
Hattersley, Roy. “The Darling of Hampstead”. The Guardian, pp. 6-7.
Education H. D.
Following her withdrawal from Bryn Mawr, HD (with Pound 's assistance) embarked on an intensive independent study programme that lasted for five years. During this period she read and studied writers such as William Morris
Family and Intimate relationships Fay Weldon
During her marriage she and Edgar entertained the literary and avant-garde world: she later regaled her grand-daughter with irreverent stories of Joseph Conrad , Jean Rhys (Such a louche young woman),
Weldon, Fay. Auto da Fay. Flamingo.
Ford Madox Ford
Family and Intimate relationships Anna Wickham
In 1905 Edith Harper met Patrick Hepburn , a lawyer and amateur astronomer who made significant discoveries about the rings of Saturn.
Hepburn, James et al. “Anna Wickham: A Memoir”. The Writings of Anna Wickham, Free Woman and Poet, edited by Reginald Donald Smith, Virago Press, pp. 1-48.
Wickham, Anna. “Introduction”. Selected Poems, edited by David Garnett, Chatto and Windus, pp. 7-11.
They were introduced by Edith's then-fiancé, William Ray , a freelance...
Family and Intimate relationships Florence Farr
FF 's father, William Farr , was a successful doctor, medical statistician, and reformer. He lectured and published on the subject of hygiene, which he preferred to call hygiology. Bernard Shaw describes him as...


1878: William Swan Sonnenschein and J. Archibald...

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William Swan Sonnenschein and J. Archibald Allen formed a partnership in the publishing firm of Swan Sonnenschein and Allen , at 15 Paternoster Square, London.

1883: L. R. S. Tomalin, an early disciple of Gustave...

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L. R. S. Tomalin , an early disciple of Gustave Jaeger 's woollen movement, set up the Jaeger Company in Fore Street, London, to sell Dr Jaeger's Sanitary Woollen Clothing..

January 1884: The Fabian Society was founded in London...

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January 1884

The Fabian Society was founded in London to publicize socialist ideas and investigate the application of socialist principles to British conditions.

Christmas 1889: The Fabian Essays appeared, edited by George...

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Christmas 1889

The Fabian Essays appeared, edited by George Bernard Shaw .

early June 1890: Philippa Fawcett of Newnham College, Cambridge,...

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early June 1890

Philippa Fawcett of Newnham College, Cambridge , was placed above the Senior Wrangler in the university's mathematics results.

February 1891: Theatre producer and critic J. T. Grein founded...

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February 1891

Theatre producer and critic J. T. Grein founded the Independent Theatre Society in London to promote literary rather than commercial plays, and the new drama in particular.

April 1892: Physical confrontation broke out at a meeting...

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April 1892

Physical confrontation broke out at a meeting in St James's Hall, London, of supporters of women's franchise.

By April 1894: English theatre patron Annie Horniman funded...

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By April 1894

English theatre patron Annie Horniman funded a repertory season at the Avenue Theatre (later the Avenue Playhouse), London which concentrated on the new drama.

1897: With her publication of Grains of Sense,...

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With her publication of Grains of Sense, philosopher Victoria, Lady Welby , shifted from theology towards a more academic and analytic study of meaning.

31 May 1898: George Bedborough, secretary of the Legitimation...

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31 May 1898

George Bedborough , secretary of the Legitimation League which sought to change the law to improve the position of illegitimate children, was arrested, largely in an attempt to damage the League through him.

1904: Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree (father of the...

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Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree (father of the writers Viola and Iris Tree ) founded an Academy of Dramatic Art at His Majesty's Theatre in the Haymarket, London.

Autumn 1904 to summer 1907: Under the management of playwright and director...

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Autumn 1904 to summer 1907

Under the management of playwright and director Harley Granville-Barker and business manager J. E. Vedrenne , the Court Theatre became the first permanent home of the new drama.

1906: Tolstoy on Shakespeare, which included a...

Women writers item


Tolstoy on Shakespeare, which included a translation of Tolstoy by Isabella Fyvie Mayo as I. F. M., and Vladimir Grigorevich Chertkov as V. Tchertkoff (as well as an essay by George Bernard Shaw ), was published.

1906: At the Annual General Meeting of the Society...

Women writers item


At the Annual General Meeting of the Society of Authors , George Bernard Shaw deplored the dragging down of literary earnings by groups possessing a non-literary income, particularly married women.

1907: Alfred Richard Orage and Holbrook Jackson...

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Alfred Richard Orage and Holbrook Jackson acquired the weekly reviewNew Age (founded in 1894).
Kindley, Evan. “Ismism”. London Review of Books, Vol.
, No. 2, pp. 33-5.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray et al., editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
under Orage
Solo: Search Oxford University Libraries Online.


Shaw, George Bernard. “An Explanatory Word from Mr. Shaw”. Florence Farr, Bernard Shaw, W.B. Yeats: Letters, edited by Clifford Bax, Home and Van Thal, 1946, p. vii - x.
Shaw, George Bernard. Arms and the Man. G. Richards, 1894.
Shaw, George Bernard. Back to Methuselah. Brentano’s, 1921.
Shaw, George Bernard. Buoyant Billions: Farfetched Fables, and Shakes versus Shav. Constable and Company, 1950.
Shaw, George Bernard. Common Sense about the War. Statesman Pub. Co., 1914.
Shaw, George Bernard. Fanny’s First Play. Constable, 1910.
Shaw, George Bernard. Heartbreak House, Great Catherine, and Playlets of the War. Constable, 1919.
Shaw, George Bernard. In Good King Charles’s Golden Days: A History Lesson. Constable & Co., 1939.
Shaw, George Bernard. John Bull’s Other Island and Major Barbara: also How He Lied to Her Husband. The Times Book Club, 1907.
Shaw, George Bernard. Man and Superman; a Comedy, and a Philosophy. A. Constable, 1903.
Shaw, George Bernard. “Note on Lady Gregory’s Plays”. Lady Gregory, Fifty Years After, edited by Dan H. Laurence et al., Colin Smythe, 1987, pp. 274-6.
Shaw, George Bernard. Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant. G. Richards, 1898.
Shaw, George Bernard. Press Cuttings. Constable & Co., 1909.
Shaw, George Bernard. Pygmalion. Constable & Co., 1914.
Shaw, George Bernard. Saint Joan. Constable, 1923.
Shaw, George Bernard. The Apple Cart. Constable & Co., 1930.
Shaw, George Bernard. The Doctor’s Dilemma, Getting Married, and The Shewing-Up of Blanco Posnet. Constable and Company, 1911.
Shaw, George Bernard. The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism. Constable & Co., 1928.
Shaw, George Bernard. The Quintessence of Ibsenism. Walter Scott, 1891.
Shaw, George Bernard. The Quintessence of Ibsenism. Hill and Wang, 1937.
Shaw, George Bernard. Three Plays for Puritans: The Devil’s Disciple, Caesar and Cleopatra, & Captain Brassbound’s Conversion. G. Richards, 1901.
Shaw, George Bernard. Too True to be Good: Village Wooing, and On the Rocks. Constable and Company, Limited., 1934.
Shaw, George Bernard. What I Really Wrote about the War. Constable & Co., 1931.