Image of William Henry Davies


Lifetime: 1871 - 1940 Passed: ≈ 83 years ago


Poet, Writer


United Kingdom

William Henry Davies

William Henry Davies (1871-1940) was a Welsh poet and writer who became known for his unconventional lifestyle and unique perspectives on nature, society, and the human experience. Born in Newport, Wales, Davies grew up in poverty and was forced to fend for himself from an early age. He traveled extensively throughout his life, spending time in both Britain and the United States.

Davies is known for his celebration of nature and his sympathy for the poor and dispossessed. He believed that the natural world offered a respite from the artificiality and cruelty of modern society, and his poetry often reflects this view. His work is characterized by a simple, unadorned style, and a focus on the essential aspects of life.

Davies became famous for his collection of poems, "The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp," which was published in 1908. The book chronicled his travels across Britain, his encounters with other tramps and vagabonds, and his observations of the natural world. The book was a critical and commercial success and is now considered a classic of modern British literature.

In addition to his poetry, Davies was also known for his essays and his outspoken political views. He was a critic of capitalism and imperialism, and he was an early advocate for environmentalism and animal rights. He believed that society had become disconnected from the natural world, and he called for a return to a simpler, more harmonious way of life.

Davies died in 1940, but his legacy lives on. He is remembered as a champion of the underdog and a voice for the natural world. His poetry continues to inspire readers around the world, and his ideas about the importance of nature and the dangers of modern society are as relevant today as they were a century ago.

One interesting fact about Davies is that he lost his leg in a railway accident and spent a significant portion of his life as a tramp and a beggar, which influenced his views and perspectives on life. He also had a strong friendship with George Bernard Shaw, who encouraged his writing and provided him with financial support.

Books by William Henry Davies

Children at Play Cover image

Children at Play

Children Nature Imaginative Poems Childhood Life Fortnightly

The poem captures the innocence and joy of children as they play together in a natural setting. It describes the children playing games such as hide-and-seek, making daisy chains, and chasing each other. The poem evokes a sense of nostalgia and the b...

Christmas Cover image


Christmas Truth Children Tradition Village Poems Verses Experiences Magic Human Spirit Joys

In "Christmas" by William Henry Davies, the celebrated poet invites readers on a delightful journey through the enchanting spirit of the holiday season. With lyrical prose and evocative imagery, Davies paints a vivid portrait of Christmas, capturing...

Days Too Short Cover image

Days Too Short

LibriVox volunteers bring you 17 recordings of Days Too Short by William H. Davies. This was the Weekly Poetry project for April 3, 2011.

Foliage: Various Poems Cover image

Foliage: Various Poems

W. H. Davies was a Welsh poet and writer. Davies spent a significant part of his life in the United Kingdom and United States, becoming one of the most popular poets of his time. Davies is usually considered one of the Georgian poets, although much o...

Autobiography of a Super-Tramp Cover image

Autobiography of a Super-Tramp

The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp is an autobiography published in 1908 by the Welsh poet and writer W. H. Davies (1871–1940). A large part of the book's subject matter describes the way of life of the tramp in the United Kingdom, Canada and the Uni...

Foliage Cover image


W.H.Davies was born in Newport, South Wales. He had a difficult childhood and spent several years in the US as a tramp or hobo. He spent one winter moving between jails in Michigan under the ‘boodle’ system; an illicit system where a tramp could make...