1900 in literature

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The year 1900 in literature involved some significant new books and publications, as well as the deaths of several highly prominent writers, including among them the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche and the controversial Irish wit Oscar Wilde. Wilde died in Paris, aged only 46, of cerebral meningitis, his health destroyed by prison and poverty; his enemy, the Marquess of Queensberry, had preceded him by eleven months; Lord Alfred Douglas had another 45 years to live.

The highly influential American author L. Frank Baum wrote the first and most famous of his Oz books, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, in 1900.

The year marked several publications on the literarily influential Boer Wars: Winston Churchill, the future Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and a major Allied political figure in World War II penned a memoir, Ian Hamilton's March, describing his experiences accompanying the British army during the Second Boer War, and Arthur Conan Doyle (famous as the creator of Sherlock Holmes) wrote on the subject in his The Great Boer War.

Zelda Sayre, the future American novelist and wife of fellow writer F. Scott Fitzgerald was born on July 24; Margaret Mitchell, who would become known as the author of Gone With the Wind, was born little more than 3 months later.


New books[edit]

The first edition original cover of one of the most prominent literary works of the year 1900, L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

New drama[edit]


Main article: 1900 in poetry



Further information: Category:1900 births
Zelda Fitzgerald at age 17.

Among the most important literary births during the turn of the 19th century were those of Margaret Mitchell and Zelda Fitzgerald, the former of which would go on to pen one of the most successful novels of all time, Gone With the Wind, published in 1936 and notably adapted as a film.

Margaret Mitchell in 1949.


Oscar Wilde in 1882.

The year involved the deaths of at least several highly prominent writers, including: The late poet Oscar Wilde (a "celebrity" poet in late-19th century western European society), the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (critical and acclaimed philologist of Weimar Classicism and one of the most famous German thinkers), the English poet Ernest Dowson (marking the death of one of the last notable poets of the Decadent movement), John Ruskin (one of the most important historical art critics and an influential essayist), Francišak Bahuševič (a literary pioneer of New Belarusian literature), Stephen Crane, R. D. Blackmore and José Maria de Eça de Queiroz, often considered the greatest Portuguese writer in the realist style.

A list, ordered by date of death (and, if the date is either unspecified or repeated, ordered alphabetically by surname) of deaths in 1900 of literary figures, authors of written works or literature-related individuals follows, including nationality and year of birth. More prominent figures are bolded:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tavis, Anna A. (1997). Rilke's Russia: A Cultural Encounter. Northwestern University Press. p. 1. ISBN 0-8101-1466-6. 
  2. ^ Davis, Donald G.; Huanwen, Cheng, Destruction Of Chinese Books in the Peking Siege Of 1900, International Federation of Library Association, retrieved 2008-10-26 
  3. ^ Leavis, Q. D. (1965). Fiction and the Reading Public (rev. ed.). London: Chatto & Windus. 
  4. ^ "Arabia: The Cradle of Islam". World Digital Library. 1900. Retrieved 2013-09-21.