The contemporary reputation of Lewis Spence as a poet is mainly based on one or two frequently-anthologised sonnets; but his historical importance as a key figure in the Scottish Renaissance, both by his poetry and his energetic participation in the literary and political controversies of the period, is considerable, and an examination of his poetry reveals much that is of interest.

Though his professional training (at Edinburgh University) was in dentistry, Spence's active life was spent in writing and research. He published extensively in the fields of folklore and anthropology, his subjects including the civilisations of ancient Egypt, the early Celtic world and the Americas; and several of his books (e.g. An …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are a member (student of staff) of a subscribing institution (see List), you should be able to access the LE on campus directly (without the need to log in), and off-campus either via the institutional log in we offer, or via your institution's remote access facilities, or by creating a personal user account with your institutional email address. If you are not a member of a subscribing institution, you will need to purchase a personal subscription. For more information on how to subscribe as an individual user, please see under Individual Subcriptions.

McClure, J. Derrick. "Lewis Spence". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 14 September 2004
[, accessed 27 November 2015.]