English Literature

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The teaching of English literature at Edinburgh University began with the Creation of the Chair of Rhetoric and Belles Lettres in 1760. At over 250 years old, Edinburgh University has the longest established English Department in the world.

Professors of Rhetoric and Belles Lettres

Professors of Rhetoric and English Literature


  • Alexander Bower, The History of the University of Edinburgh. 3 vols. Edinburgh, 1817-1830.
  • Sir Alexander Grant, The Story of the University of Edinburgh during its First Three Hundred Years, 2 vols (London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1884)