Dame Iris Murdoch

  • Dublin, Ireland
  • Ed Victor Ltd


Dame Iris Murdoch was born in Dublin in 1919 to Anglo-lrish parents. She went to school in London and Bristol, before studying at Somerville College, Oxford, where she and later at Cambridge, as a student in Philosophy. On leaving University in 1942, she worked in for the British Government in the Treasury Department, and with the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. After the war she went to Belgium and Austria, where she worked in a Displaced Persons Camp. In 1948 she was made a Fellow of St Anne's College, Oxford, where she lectured in Philosophy. In 1956 she married the critic and Oxford Professor of English, John Bayley. She was awarded a CBE in 1976 and a DBE in 1967. Her novels have been translated into 26 languages.

Widely regarded by many critics as one of the most important post-war novelists, her fiction include Under the Net (1953), The Bell (1958), A Severed Head (1961), Bruno's Dream (1969), The Black Prince (1973), The Sacred and Profane Love Machine (1974), winner of the Whitbread Novel Award, The Sea, The Sea (1978), winner of the Booker Prize for Fiction, The Good Apprentice (1985) and The Green Knight (1993). Her books on philosophy include The Sovereignty of Good (1970) and Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals (1992). Her plays include 'The Servants and the Snow', adapted into a libretto for an opera by William Matthias in 1980, 'Art and Eros' and 'The Black Prince', both been produced at the National Theatre in London. Her portrait by Tom Phillips was placed in the National Portrait Gallery in 1987.

Dame Iris Murdoch died in 1999.


Something Special
Existentialists and Mystics: Writings on Philosophy and Literature
Jackson's Dilemma
The Green Knight
Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals
The Message to the Planet
The Times of the Angels
An Unofficial Rose
A Severed Head
The Book and the Brotherhood
Acastos: Two Platonic Dialogues
The Good Apprentice
A Year of the Birds
The Philosopher's Pupil
Reynolds Stone
Nuns and Soldiers
The Sea, the Sea
The Fire and the Sun: Why Plato Banished the Artists
Henry and Cato
A Word Child
The Black Prince
The Sacred and Profane Love Machine
The Servants and the Snow and The Three Arrows
An Accidental Man
A Fairly Honourable Defeat
Bruno's Dream
The Nice and the Good
The Sovereignty of Good Over Other Concepts
The Time of the Angels
The Red and the Green
The Italian Girl
The Unicorn
An Unofficial Rose
A Severed Head
The Bell
The Sandcastle
The Flight from the Enchanter
Under the Net
Sartre: Romantic Rationalist


Booker Prize for Fiction
Booker Prize for Fiction
Booker Prize for Fiction
Whitbread Novel Award
Booker Prize for Fiction
James Tait Black Memorial Prize (for fiction)
Booker Prize for Fiction
Booker Prize for Fiction