Symons, Arthur

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Symons, Arthur Gender: M
Arthur William Symons
born on 28 February 1865 at 23:00 (= 11:00 PM )
Place Milford Haven, Wales, 51n40, 5w02
Timezone GMT h0e (is standard time)
Data source
Accuracy in question
Rodden Rating C
Collector: Scholfield
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_piscol.18.gif 10°25' s_mo.18.gif s_aricol.18.gif 24°20 Asc.s_scocol.18.gif 04°09'

Alternative birthtime
date according to biography
Date 21 February 1865 at 23:00 (= 11:00 PM )
Place Milford Haven, WALES (UK), 51n40, 5w02
Timezone GMT h0e (is standard time)
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_piscol.18.gif 03°23' s_mo.18.gif s_capcol.18.gif 10°25 Asc.s_libcol.18.gif 29°20'

Arthur Symons


British poet, critic and magazine editor.

Symons was educated privately, spending much of his time in France and Italy. In 1884–1886 he edited four of Bernard Quaritch's Shakespeare Quarto Facsimiles, and in 1888–1889 seven plays of the "Henry Irving" Shakespeare. He became a member of the staff of the Athenaeum in 1891, and of the Saturday Review in 1894, but his major editorial feat was his work with the short-lived Savoy.

His first volume of verse, Days and Nights (1889), consisted of dramatic monologues. His later verse is influenced by a close study of modern French writers, of Charles Baudelaire, and especially of Paul Verlaine. He reflects French tendencies both in the subject-matter and style of his poems, in their eroticism and their vividness of description. Symons contributed poems and essays to the Yellow Book, including an important piece which was later expanded into The Symbolist Movement in Literature, which would have a major influence on William Butler Yeats and T. S. Eliot. From late 1895 through 1896 he edited, along with Aubrey Beardsley and Leonard Smithers, The Savoy, a literary magazine which published both art and literature.

In 1892, The Minister's Call, Symons's first play, was produced by the Independent Theatre Society – a private club – to avoid censorship by the Lord Chamberlain's Office.

In 1902 Symons made a selection from his earlier verse, published as Poems. He translated from the Italian of Gabriele D'Annunzio The Dead City (1900) and The Child of Pleasure (1898), and from the French of Émile Verhaeren The Dawn (1898).

In 1909 Symons suffered a psychotic breakdown, and published very little new work for a period of more than twenty years. His Confessions: A Study in Pathology (1930) has a moving description of his breakdown and treatment. He died on 22 January 1945.

Link to Wikipedia biography


Source Notes

Sy Scholfield quotes from "Arthur Symons, a critical biography" by Roger Lhombreaud (Unicorn Press, 1963): "The following year, still remaining in the same circuit, he [Symons's father] lived in the little port of Milford Haven, eight miles from Haverfordwest. On February 21, 1865, at 11 p.m., Arthur William Symons was born" (p. 5), "All his life, Arthur Symons kept the four-page horoscope worked out for him by George Pollexfen [uncle of W. B. Yeats] in March 1898" (p. 135). Same data in "Poets of the 'nineties: A Biographical Anthology" by Derek Stanford (J. Baker, 1965), p. 94: "ARTHUR WILLIAM SYMONS was born at Milford Haven on 21st February 1865 at 11 pm."

Many Internet sources, and Encyclopedia Britannica, give 28 February 1865 as date of birth.

A birth certificate from the General register Office was purchased, it gives the date 28 February and no time. The main entry now uses that date, with the time from the biography. A second entry for the biography date was added.


  • Diagnoses : Psychological : Psychotic Episode (Breakdown)
  • Vocation : Writers : Critic
  • Vocation : Writers : Poet
  • Vocation : Writers : Publisher/ Editor