Walter Scott

SCOTT, (Sir) Walter. b. Edinburgh, 15 August 1771; d. Abbotsford, near Melrose, 21 September 1832. He was educated at Edinburgh High School and the University of Edinburgh. He became a lawyer (sheriff-depute of Selkirkshire, 1799), but in his spare time he developed a passion for ballad literature, publishing Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border in three volumes (1802-03). He rose to fame as a poet, publishing The Lay of the Last Minstrel (1805), Marmion (1808), The Lady of the Lake (1810) and other narrative poems of great charm and verve. The rise of Byron as a rival poet turned Scott’s attention to novel writing, and between 1814 and 1831 he produced the magnificent series, beginning with...

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