You are in:  Home - Poetry - Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica
Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica
Out of Stock

Publication Date
10 November 2008
Out of Stock
Birlinn Limited

Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica

by Hamish Henderson - Find out more about the author
‘Mr Henderson’s compassion, his sense of the fundamental innocence and victimisation of ordinary soldiers, gives his poetry a rough humanity, a sincerity and emotional truth that makes it valuable.’—Times Literary Supplement

Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica was written between 1942 and 1947, when Hamish Henderson was serving in the North African desert during the Second World War. Each elegy pays tribute to the men who fought with and against him, their lives portrayed with great sympathy and compassion, while the desert itself becomes the unforgiving enemy.

Published in 1948, the poems were highly praised by his contemporaries including Cecil Day-Lewis, T. S Eliot and Hugh MacDairmid and. The collection was awarded the Somerset Maugham Prize in 1949.

The book has an introduction by Adrian Mitchell and an essay written by Sorley Maclean.

Hamish Henderson was born in 1919 in Blairgowrie in Perthshire, educated in Dulwich College and Cambridge University, and served in North Africa and Italy with the 51st Highland Division during the Second World War. Along with his poetry, Hamish was well-known as a songwriter, a translator and a pioneer in the field of Scottish folksong. He died in March 2002.

Also available:
The Armstrong Nose by Hamish Henderson