Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Classics
ISBN: 9780940322547
Pages: 224
Publication Date: October 31, 2000

Seven Men

by Max Beerbohm, introduction by John Updike



In Seven Men the brilliant English caricaturist and critic Max Beerbohm turns his comic searchlight upon the fantastic fin-de-siècle world of the 1890s—the age of Oscar Wilde, Aubrey Beardsley, and the young Yeats, as well of Beerbohm’s own first success. In a series of luminous sketches, Beerbohm captures the likes of Enoch Soames, only begetter of the neglected poetic masterwork Fungoids; Maltby and Braxton, two fashionable novelists caught in a bitter rivalry; and “Savonarola” Brown, author of a truly incredible tragedy encompassing the entire Italian Renaissance. One of the masterpieces of modern humorous writing, Seven Men is also a shrewdly perceptive, heartfelt homage to the wonderfully eccentric character of a bygone Max Beerbohm, introduction by John Updike


As a parodist, he is probably the finest in English.
— W.H. Auden

The most faultless of my contemporaries...I prefer Seven Men to all his other books.
— Bertrand Russell

Not even a good comedy is so rare as genuine satire, and when an example of the latter is produced some indulgence in superlatives may be excused. In the case of [Seven Men] it is difficult to restrain praise within the bounds of judgment, for its beneficent, limpid ridicule is an undiluted joy.
The Spectator