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Anthony Powell


Anthony Powell (it’s pronounced pole) was born in Westminster in 1905. He went to Eton and then read history at Balliol College, Oxford. His first job was working for the publisher, Duckworth, where he eventually became an editor. He left the company in 1936 to work as a scriptwriter for Warner but none of his scripts was ever made into a film and he soon left to become a full-time writer. During World War II, he served in the Intelligence Corps. After the War, he worked for the Times Literary Supplement and then as literary editor of Punch. Starting in 1951, he published his Dance to the Music of Time series, with the final and twelfth book published twenty-four years later. It is for this work that he is best known, with the character of Widmerpool a key character of English literature. He continued writing until his ninetieth year, dying in 2000. He will always take second place to Evelyn Waugh as the best-known English comic novelist of the twentieth century and it seems likely that, given the somewhat old-fashioned nature of his writing, his reputation will wane during the twenty-first century. Of course, I prefer William Gerhardie.

Books about Anthony Powell

Michael Barber: Anthony Powell: A Life
Neil Brennan: Anthony Powell

Other links

Anthony Powell
Anthony Powell
Fine memories of Anthony Powell
The Anthony Powell Society




1928 The Barnard Letters (biography)
1931 Afternoon Men (fiction)
1932 Venusberg (fiction)
1933 From a View to a Death (fiction)
1934 Caledonia, A Fragment (poetry)
1936 Agents and Patients (fiction)
1939 What’s Become of Waring (fiction)
1948 John Aubrey and his Friends (biography)
1951 A Question of Upbringing
1952 A Buyer’s Market
1955 The Acceptance World
1957 At Lady Molly’s
1960 Casanova’s Chinese Restaurant
1962 The Kindly Ones
1964 The Valley of Bones
1966 The Soldier’s Art
1968 The Military Philosophers
1971 Books Do Furnish a Room
1971 Two Plays: The Garden God, The Rest I’ll Whistle (drama)
1973 Temporary Kings
1975 Hearing Secret Harmonies
1976 To Keep the Ball Rolling, Vol I. Infants of the Spring (autobiography)
1978 To Keep the Ball Rolling, Vol II. Messengers of Day (autobiography)
1980 To Keep the Ball Rolling, Vol III. Faces in My Time (autobiography)
1982 To Keep the Ball Rolling, Vol IV. The Strangers All Are Gone (autobiography)
1983 O, How The Wheel Becomes It! (fiction)
1985 Iron Aspidistra (as Mark Members) (fiction)
1986 The Fisher King (fiction)
1990 Miscellaneous Verdicts: Writings on Writers 1946-1989
1991 Under Review: Further Writings on Writers 1946-1989
1995 Journals 1982-1986 (autobiography)
1996 Journals 1987-1989 (autobiography)
1997 Journals 1990-1992 (autobiography)
2001 A Writer’s Notebook (autobiography)