William Empson in 1946. Photo: Picture Post / Hulton Archive

When Sir William Empson died in 1984 in his seventy-eighth year, he had published four books of literary criticism (Seven Types of Ambiguity, Some Versions of Pastoral, The Structure of Complex Words, and Milton’s God), a Collected Poems, a long introduction to a selection of Coleridge’s poems, and a quantity of miscellaneous periodical essays. Subsequently, another nine books have appeared, gathering the essays, many extensively revised, with some hitherto unpublished pieces including, as recently as last year,...

 
Popular Right Now