1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Archer, William

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ARCHER, WILLIAM (1856-  ), English critic, was born at Perth on the 23rd of September 1856, and was educated at Edinburgh University. He became a leader-writer on the Edinburgh Evening News in 1875, and after a year in Australia returned to Edinburgh. In 1879 he became dramatic critic of the London Figaro, and in 1884 of the World. In London he soon took a prominent literary place. Mr Archer had much to do with introducing Ibsen to the English public by his translation of The Pillars of Society, produced at the Gaiety Theatre, London, in 1880. He also translated, alone or in collaboration, other productions of the Scandinavian stage: Ibsen’s Doll’s House (1889), Master Builder (1893); Edvard Brandes’s A Visit (1892); Ibsen’s Peer Gynt (1892); Little Eyolf (1895); and John Gabriel Borkman (1897); and he edited Henrik Ibsen’s Prose Dramas (5 vols., 1890-1891). Among his critical works are:—English Dramatists of To-day (1882); Masks or Faces? (1888); five vols. of critical notices reprinted, The Theatrical World (1893-1897); America To-day, Observations and Reflections; Poets of the Younger Generation (1901); Real Conversations (1904).