Wilfrid Thorley

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Wilfrid Thorley (31 July 1878, Southport, Lancashire - 28 January 1963, Wirral, Cheshire) was an English poet and translator.

He was educated privately, then at the Liverpool Institute (now University of Liverpool) and Grenoble University. However, he said that he learnt most while teaching English to foreign students in Sweden, Belgium, France and Italy, during the ten years preceding World War I.

His best-known poem is "Chant for Reapers", due to its inclusion in the Oxford Book of English Verse [1].


  • A Primer of English for Foreign Students, 1910
  • An English Reader for Foreign Students, 1913
  • Cloud-Cuckoo-Land: a Child's Book of Verses, 1923
  • Confessional, and other Poems, 1911
  • Paul Verlaine, 1914
  • Fleurs-de-Lys, 1920
  • The Londoner's Chariot, and other Poems, 1925
  • A Bouquet from France, 1926
  • Maypole Market: a Child's Book of Verses, 1927
  • Cartwheels and Catkins: Verses for Girls and Boys, 1930
  • A Year in England for Foreign Students, 1930
  • The Happy Colt, and other verses, 1940
  • Barleycomb Billy, and other rhymes, 1943
  • The French Muse, 50 Examples, 1945

As Harley Quinn:

  • A Caboodle of Beasts, 1945
  • Quinn's Quiz: rhymed riddles on a variety of subjects for children or their parents, 1957