Peter Bayley (academic)

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Peter Charles Bayley (25 January 1921 – 3 November 2015) was an English fellow at University College, Oxford, England.

Early life[edit]

Bayley was born on 25 January 1921. He was educated at The Crypt School, Gloucester, and University College, Oxford, where he was a Sidwick Exhibitioner (1940–41).[1] He undertook war service during the Second World War (1941–46).

Academic career[edit]

He was subsequently a Junior Research Fellow (1947–49), then a Fellow and Praelector in English (1949–72), and Keeper of the College Buildings at University College. He was made an Emeritus Fellow of the college in 1985.

Bayley was the author of books on and Edmund Spenser,[2] 19th century novelists,[3] and John Milton.[4]

The Times Literary Supplement wrote of his book on Spenser as being "a packed but lucidly written book which will be of permanent value to all students, and indeed readers, of Spenser".[5] He also edited the University College Record for a number of years.

While a don at Oxford, Bayley oversaw the activities of the Oxford University Dramatic Society (OUDS) and the University College Players. He produced He Who Gets Slapped by Leonid Andreyev for the Univ Players in 1953. He was a Curator of the University Theatre and Chairman of the University Theatre Appeal Committee. Bayley was the tutor of the author V.S. Naipaul.[6]


  1. ^ Bayley, Peter C., Celebrating a Significant Insignificant Bequest. The Journal of the Oxford Society, pages 12–17, May 1999.
  2. ^ Bayley, Peter C., Edmund Spenser: Prince of Poets. Hutchinson Education, 1971. ISBN 0-09-109391-0.
  3. ^ Bayley, Peter C., Loves and Deaths: Novelists' Tales of the 19th Century from Scott to Hardy, Oxford University Press, 1972.
  4. ^ Bayley, Peter C., York Notes on John Milton's "Selected Poems". Longman Literature Guides, 1988. ISBN 0-582-02275-4.
  5. ^ University College Record, Volume VI, Number 2, page 115, August 1972.
  6. ^ French, Patrick, Patrick French's biography of VS Naipaul: Naipaul's friendship with Paul Theroux, Daily Telegraph, 23 March 2008.