The Fortnightly Review

The Fortnightly Review (which changed to a monthly format within twenty months) was one of Andrew Lang’s earliest publication venues; he published there before giving up his Merton fellowship, and the Fortnightly is also the site of one of Lang’s most famous articles “Mythology and Fairy Tales” (May 1873), his first Fortnightly Review publication. The article correctly contests Max Müller’s understanding of fairy tale origins.

The Fortnightly Review was founded by Anthony Trollope and Frederic and Edward Chapman, among others, and edited by George Henry Lewes from its founding in May 1865 until the end of 1866 (vol. 1–6, or the Old Series). During Lang’s time as a writer, the periodical was edited by John Morley (from 1867), T. H.S. Escott (from November 1882–June 1886), Frank Harris (succeeding Escott in 1886), and William Leonard Courtney (from December 1894) (Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century JournalismWellesley Index). In addition to the Fortnightly being one of Lang’s earliest publication venues, the journal should interest Lang scholars because it, like Blackwood’s on the other hand, and the Daily News on a third, demonstrates the great range in the type and political leanings of periodicals in which Lang published work.

All of Lang’s work in The Fortnightly Review was signed. As is noted in the Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century Journalism, the Fortnightly was against anonymous publication: “contributors were free to adopt a range of political positions and to do so under the sign of their own name” (228).  The Wellesley Index introduction to The Fortnightly Review notes that the Fortnightly Review policy contributed to changing opinions regarding anonymous publication: “Within a few years the Contemporary (1866), the Nineteenth Century (1877), and the National Review (1882) all adopted the policy of signature.”

Lang Articles and other Writings in the Fortnightly Review

  1. “Mythology and Fairy Tales.” Fortnightly Review 19 O.S./13 N.S. (May 1873): 618–31.
  2. “Homer and His Recent Critics.” Fortnightly Review 23 O.S./17 N.S. (Apr. 1875): 575–89.
  3. “Three New Novels.” [By William Black, George MacDonald, and Rhoda Broughton]. Fortnightly Review 27 O.S./21 N.S. (Jan. 1877): 88–96.
  4. “Titian.” Fortnightly Review 27 O.S./21 N.S. (Feb. 1877): 172–87.
  5. “Emile Zola.”Fortnightly Review 37 O.S./31 N.S. (Apr. 1882): 439–52.
  6. “In the Wrong Paradise; an Occidental Apologue.” Fortnightly Review 40 O.S./34 N.S. (Dec. 1883): 845–54. Reprinted in In the Wrong Paradise, 1886.
  7. “Lady Book Lovers.” Fortnightly Review 46 O.S./40 N.S. (Nov. 1886): 633–40.
  8. “M. Renan’s Later Works.” Fortnightly Review 47 O.S./41 N.S. (Jan. 1887): 50–60.
  9. “Fine Passages in Verse and Prose Selected by Living Men of Letters” (No. I) (One of the men of letters is Andrew Lang). Fortnightly Review 48 O.S./42 N.S. (Aug. 1887): 297–316.
  10. “Byways of Greek Song.”Fortnightly Review 48 O.S./42 N.S. (Oct. 1887): 491–502. [See the volume in Google Books.]
  11. “Lucian.” Fortnightly Review 50 O.S./44 N.S. (July 1888): 57–68.
  12. Reply to “Mr. [Andrew] Lang on the Origin of Religion,” by John M. Robertson. Fortnightly Review 70 O.S./64 N.S (Nov. 1898): 726–44 [including the Robertson article].
  13. “Charles Dickens.” Fortnightly Review 70 O.S./64 N.S. (Dec. 1898): 944–60.
  14. “Mr. Frazer’s Theory of Totemism.” Fortnightly Review 71 O.S./65 N.S. (June 1899): 1012–25.
  15. “Papers of the Scottish Reformation.” Fortnightly Review 74 O.S./68 N.S. (Aug. 1900): 217–27.
  16. “The Origins of the Alphabet.” October 1904.
  17. “Shelley’s Oxford Martyrdom.” February 1907.
  18. “The Chef d’Oeuvre of M. France.” June 1908.
  19. “James de la Cloche.” September 1909.
  20. “Byron and Mary Chaworth.” August 1910.


Brake, Laurel and Marysa Demoor, eds. Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century Journalism in Great Britain and Ireland. Gent: Academia Press, 2009.

Green, Roger Lancelyn. Andrew Lang: A Critical Biography. Leicester: Edmund Ward, 1946. p. 252.

The Wellesley Index to Victorian Periodicals, 1824–1900. ProQuest.


U Penn’s online book page’s entry on the Fortnightly Review, with its list of digitally available copies, is available here. Volume 22 (NS), July–Dec. 1877), Volume 26 (N.S.), (July–Dec. 1879),  Volume 27 (N.S.), (Jan.–Jun. 1880), Volume 28 (NS), (July–Dec. 1880), and Volume 50 (July–Dec. 1891) are available on Google Books, but have no articles from Andrew Lang.

Advanced Google Book searches can be unreliable. A search for the Fortnightly Review as a title yields only one full-text result. Adding the name of an individual will sometimes yield a couple more. However, a search for that individual’s name will not yield all the available scans of periodicals with that individual’s name in them; more scans with that contributor’s name in them may come up in a search done for an entirely different person.
This page was last updated on 13 August 2018.
Return to the list of known periodicals to which Lang contributed.