The Academy

Lang began “writing regularly for The Academy” in 1874 and contributed letters about the founding of a Folk-Lore Society on the first and fifteenth of December 1877 (Edinburgh Critical Edition of the Selected Writings of Andrew Lang, vol. 1 46). (The Folk-Lore Society was founded in 1878.)

Lang also wrote many reviews for The Academy: Roger Lancelyn Green writes in his critical biography of Lang that there are “86 Book Reviews [in the Academy] between 10th January 1870 and 11th June 1887″ (254). These include Lang’s signed review of She (15 Jan. 1887, pp. 35–36), the only official review that Lang wrote of Haggard’s most famous novel. When Haggard asked Lang if he could dedicate She to him, Lang thanked him but also stated, ‘If you do, I shan’t be able to review it, except with my name signed thereto and my honest confession. Probably I could do that in the Academy’ (qtd. in Higgins, Rider Haggard, 104).

While a complete list of Lang’s contributions to The Academy has not been made, the periodical is digitized in British Periodicals. Roger Lancelyn Green also lists the following articles and letters on pp. 254–55 of his critical biography:

  • “Letter: On Founding Folklore Society.” 1 Dec. 1877. [See also his letter of 15 Dec.]
  • “New Facts about Molière.” 20 Mar. 1878.
  • “Max Müller on Homer.” 6 April 1878.
  • “The Age of Homer.” 8 Mar. 1879.
  • “Kaffir Folktales.” 9 Sep. 1882.
  • “Anthropology and Ancient Literature.” 10 Mar. 1883.
  • “Myths and Household Tales.” 7 Feb. 1885.
  • “Letter: The Merton Professorship.” 20 June 1885.
  • “The Great Hare (Anthropological).” 15 May 1886.
  • [Review of Rider Haggard’s She. 15 Jan. 1887]
  • “The Metaphysics of Savages.” 21 Jan. 1888.
  • “Letter: Odysseus and Helen.” 13 Dec. 1890.
  • “Letter: Odysseus and the Cyclops.” 10 Jan. 1891.

B. Meredith Langstaff also notes contributions by Lang on 20 Jan. 1885, 9 May 1896, 2 Sep. 1899, and 1 Sep. 1900 and cites the review of Lang’s Books and Bookmen that appeared on 12 Feb. 1887.

Lang wrote a short letter to the Academy, “The Plot of Edwin Drood,” on 19 Aug. 1905, p. 862, where he corrects some of his own earlier statements on the subject.

David MacRitchie’s response to Lang’s comment on his work in “The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns, and Fairies” appears on pp. 74–75 of the Academy for 22 July 1893.

T. Hutchinson reviewed Lang’s The Life and Letters of John Gibson Lockhart on 7 Nov. 1896, pp. 341–45.