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Ford Madox Ford

1873–1939

Ford Madox Ford was born Ford Hermann Hueffer on December 17, 1873, in Merton, England. The son of a German music critic and grandson of a Pre-Raphaelite painter, Ford published his first novel, The Shifting of Fire (T. F. Unwin, 1892), at age eighteen.

Often associated with the Imagist movement, Ford was the author of numerous poetry collections, including New Poems (William Edwin Rudge, 1927), Collected Poems (Max Goschen, 1914), High Germany (Duckworth, 1911), and The Face of the Night (J. Macqueen, 1904).

Ford was best known for his novels, particularly The Good Soldier: A Tale of Passion (John Lane, 1915), and for his works of literary criticism. In 1914, Ezra Pound wrote, “Mr. Hueffer is the best critic in England, one might say the only critic of any importance.”

The founder of the English Review, Ford is also remembered for his work publishing and encouraging his contemporaries. In the introduction to Collected Poems, he writes, “I have kept before me one unflinching aim—to register my own times in terms of my own time, and still more to urge those who are better poets and better prose-writers than myself to have the same aim.”

He fought in World War I from 1915 to 1917, returning home shell-shocked after the Battle of the Somme. In 1919 he changed his name to Ford Madox Ford. He died in France on June 26, 1939.

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