Peter Ackroyd

Paul Smethurst (University of Hong Kong)
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Peter Ackroyd was born in London in 1949 and educated at St. Benedict’s School, Ealing. He graduated from Clare College, Cambridge with a Double First in English and then won a research fellowship to study at Yale University from 1971-73. At Cambridge Ackroyd’s main interest was poetry. He claims to have had little interest in fiction and did not start reading novels seriously until he was appointed literary editor at the


, where he was to work from 1973 to 1981. In 1986 he was appointed chief book reviewer of the


. Today Ackroyd is best known for his six biographies and ten novels, but before his first novel was published he had three collections of poems to his name,



London Lickpenny

(1973) and

Country Life

(1978). Most of these are now available in a…

3178 words

Citation: Smethurst, Paul. "Peter Ackroyd". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 September 2002 [, accessed 14 April 2024.]

15 Peter Ackroyd 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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