Irving, Laurence

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Irving, Laurence Gender: M
born on 11 April 1897 at 03:00 (= 03:00 AM )
Place London, England, 51n30, 0w10
Timezone GMT h0e (is standard time)
Data source
Rectified from approx. time
Rodden Rating C
Collector: Scholfield
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_aricol.18.gif 21°29' s_mo.18.gif s_leocol.18.gif 00°31 Asc.s_aqucol.18.gif 07°09'


English artist, book illustrator and Hollywood set designer and art director.

He was the son of actors H. B. Irving and Dorothea Baird, and the biographer of his grandfather, the noted Victorian era actor Henry Irving. His sister was the actress and founder of the Keep Britain Tidy Campaign, Elizabeth Irving. He lived and died in Wittersham, Kent (on 23 October 1988), within walking distance of the house, Smallhythe Place, where Dame Ellen Terry lived, who was his grandfather's leading lady at the Lyceum Theatre in London's West End.

As a book illustrator, he produced artwork for Richard Hakluyt's Voyages & Discoveries of the English (1926) and John Masefield’s Philip the King (1927). In 1928 Irving went to Hollywood with Douglas Fairbanks to be his Art Director on The Iron Mask (1929), the last of his full-scale silent films and, later, in collaboration with William Cameron Menzies, to design the production of the 1929 film The Taming of the Shrew. He was the Art Director for the films 77 Park Lane (1931) and Colonel Blood (1934). On his return to the United Kingdom in the 1930s, he worked on other notable films including Moonlight Sonata (1937) and George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion (1938) and Major Barbara (1941).

After the War he was invited by J. Arthur Rank to produce and design the film adaptation of Sheridan Le Fanu’s Uncle Silas (1947). Laurence Irving wrote the highly regarded and definitive biographies Henry Irving, the Actor and his World and The Successors, and two volumes of autobiography, Designing for the Movies: the Memoirs of Laurence Irving, and Great Interruption: An Autobiography 1938-45 (1983).

He died on 23 October 1988.

Link to Wikipedia biography



Source Notes

Sy Scholfield quotes Laurence Irving, "The successors" (1967), p. 19: "I was born in the early hours of April 11th, 1897. It was Easter Day."


  • Vocation : Art : Stage/ Set design
  • Vocation : Art : Other Art (book illustrator)
  • Vocation : Writers : Autobiographer
  • Vocation : Writers : Biographer