Henry Seidel Canby

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Time cover, 19 May 1924

Henry Seidel Canby (September 6, 1878 – April 5, 1961) was a critic, editor, and Yale University professor.

A scion of a Quaker family that arrived in Wilmington, Delaware, around 1740 and grew to regional prominence through milling and business affairs,[1] Henry Seidel Canby was a son of Edward T. Canby.[2] Canby was born in Wilmington, and attended Wilmington Friends School. He graduated from Yale in 1899, then taught at the university until becoming a professor in 1922.

Following a four-year stint as the editor of the Literary Review of the New York Evening Post, Canby became one of the founders and editors of the Saturday Review of Literature, serving as the last until 1936. His notes on the work of Vilfredo Pareto in 1933 in the Saturday Review helped launch the Pareto vogue of the 1930s.[3]

He was the father of Edward T. Canby (1912-1998), a noted reviewer, radio-show host, folklorist and early advocate of electronic music.[4]


  • College Sons and College Fathers (1915)
  • Everyday Americans (1920)
  • Definitions: Essays in Contemporary Criticism (1922)
  • American Estimates (1929)
  • Classic Americans (1931)
  • The Age of Confidence (1934)
  • Alma Mater: The Gothic Age of the American College (1936)
  • Seven Years Harvest (1936)
  • Thoreau (1939)
  • Walt Whitman An American (1943)
  • The Brandywine (1941) (Part of the Rivers of America Series)
  • American Memoir (1947)
  • Introduction to Favorite Poems of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1947)
  • Turn West, Turn East: Mark Twain and Henry James (1951)


  1. ^ "Collecting Delaware Books: Henry Seidel Canby and "His" People"
  2. ^ "Turmoil in New Mexico, 1846-1868" By William A. Keleher
  3. ^ Joseph V. Femia & Alasdair J. Marshall, eds., Vilfredo Pareto: Beyond Disciplinary Boundaries (Surrey, UK: Ashgate Publishing, 2012). Lawrence Henderson, George Homans, and Bernard DeVoto also played a role in promoting interest in Pareto's work.
  4. ^ NYT obit of Edward T. Canby

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Homer Saint-Gaudens
Cover of Time Magazine
19 May 1924
Succeeded by
Sir James Craig