A. D. Hope

Ivor Griffiths, Poet, Novelist & Short Story Writer

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A. D. Hope
Born Alec Derwent Hope
July 21, 1907
Flag of Australia Cooma, New South Wales
Died July 13, 2000
Canberra, ACT
Occupation Poet and essayist
Spouse Penelope Robinson

Alec Derwent Hope (July 21, 1907 - July 13, 2000) was an Australian poet and essayist known for his satirical slant. He was also a critic, teacher and academic.

Hope was born in Cooma, New South Wales, and educated partly at home and in Tasmania. He attended Fort Street Boys High School, Sydney University, and then the University of Oxford on a scholarship. Returning to Australia in 1931 he then trained as a teacher, and spent some time drifting. He worked as a psychologist with the New South Wales Department of Labour and Industry, and as a lecturer in Education and English at Sydney Teachers College (1937-44).

He was a lecturer at the University of Melbourne from 1945 to 1950, and in 1951 took the post as the first professor of English at the newly-founded Canberra University College, later of the Australian National University(ANU) when the two institutions merged, a chair he held until retiring in 1968. From 1968 was appointed Emeritus Professor at the ANU.[1]

Although he was published as a poet while still young, The Wandering Islands (1955) was his first collection, what remained of his early work after it was mostly destroyed in manuscript in a fire. Its publication was also delayed by concern about the effects of Hope's highly-erotic and savagely-satirical verse on the Australian public. His influences were Pope and the Augustan poets, Auden, and Yeats; he was a polymath, very largely self-taught, and with a talent to offend his countrymen. He also wrote an amusing 'reply' to the poem “To His Coy Mistress” by Andrew Marvell.

He was awarded an OBE in 1972 and the AC in 1981,[2] and many other honours. He died in Canberra and is buried at the Queanbeyan Lawn Cemetery.


  • 1 Awards
  • 2 Bibliography
  • 3 Notes
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links


  • Robert Frost Award for Poetry
  • Grace Leven Prize for Poetry 1956
  • Britannica Award for Literature in 1965
  • Australian Literature Society Gold Medal in 1966
  • Myer Award for Australian Poetry in 1967
  • Ingram Merrill Award for Literature (New York) in 1969
  • Levinson Prize for Poetry [2] (Chicago) in 1969
  • The Age Book of the Year Fiction Award in 1976 for A Late Picking
  • New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards Special Award in 1989


  • The Wandering Islands (1955),
  • Poems (1960),
  • The cave and the spring (1965) essays
  • Collected poems (1966),
  • New poems (1965-1969),
  • Dunciad Minor (1970) satire
  • Coupe De Grace (1970),
  • A midsummer eve's dream (1970)
  • Native companions (1974),
  • A late picking (1975),
  • The pack of Autolycus (1978) essays
  • The new Cratylus (1979) poetics
  • A book of answers (1978)
  • The drifting continent (1979) poems
  • Antechinus (1981),
  • The tragical history of Dr Faustus (1982),
  • The age of reason (1985) poems
  • Ladies from the sea (1987) drama
  • Orpheus (1991) poems
  • Chance encounters memoirs


  1. ^ MS 5836 Papers of A.D. Hope (1907-2000). National Library of Australia. Retrieved on 2007-07-13.
  2. ^ a b Queen's Birthday Award. Australian Government. Retrieved on 2007-07-13.
  • MS 5836 Papers of A.D. Hope (1907-2000). National Library of Australia. Retrieved on 2007-07-13.
  • McCulloch, Ann (2005). Dance of the Nomad: a study of the selected notebooks of A. D. Hope. Canberra: Pandanus Books, 366 p.. ISBN 1740761685. 
  • On A.D. Hope (TLS, May 19, 2006). Clive James. Retrieved on 2007-07-13.
  • Poems of A. D. Hope
  • Some of Alec Derwent Hope Poems

  • Persondata
    NAME Hope, Alec Derwent
    SHORT DESCRIPTION Australian poet and essayist
    DATE OF BIRTH July 21, 1907
    PLACE OF BIRTH Cooma, New South Wales, Australia
    DATE OF DEATH July 13, 2000
    PLACE OF DEATH Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
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