R. D. Fitzgerald

R. D. Fitzgerald

:"For the botanist, see Robert D. FitzGerald, (1830-1892)"Robert David FitzGerald III AM OBE (22 February 190224 May 1987) was an Australian poet.


FitzGerald was born in Hunters Hill, New South Wales, a third-generation Australian of Irish extraction, and studied science at the University of Sydney. He left before graduating, however, and followed in the footsteps of both his father and grandfather Robert D. FitzGerald by taking up a post as a surveyor. In the 1930s he travelled to Fiji where he worked the Native Lands Commission, surveying tribal boundaries, and experience important to his poetry. ["Modern Australian Poetry: 1920-1970", by Herbert Jaffa, Gale Research Company, 1979] He spent World War II doing engineering surveys in New South Wales and working for the Australian Department of the Interior (from 1939 to 1965).

FitzGerald's poetry, together with that of Kenneth Slessor, was an important modernist influence on Australian literature of the late 1920s and 1930s, being at once more serious and more workmanlike than much of the poetry of the period. Jack Lindsay wrote of them:

In later life, too, FitzGerald was influential, not only through his poetry but as a lecturer and reviewer. He died in Glen Innes, New South Wales, aged eighty-four.


* 1928 Panton Arts Club (UK), Festival of Arts and Letters Bronze Medal, winner for "To meet the sun"
* 1938 Australian Literature Society Poetry Gold Medal winner for "Moonlight acre"
* 1938 Australia's Sesquicentenary Celebration Long Poem Prize, winner for "Essay on memory"
* 1951 Officer of the Order of the British Empire for services to literature [ [http://www.itsanhonour.gov.au/honours/honour_roll/search.cfm?aus_award_id=1109361&search_type=advanced&showInd=true OBE 1951] ]
* 1952 Grace Leven Prize for Poetry winner for "Between two tides"
* 1959 Grace Leven Prize for Poetry winner for "The wind at your door : a poem"
* 1962 Grace Leven Prize for Poetry winner for "Southmost twelve"
* 1974 Robert Frost Medallion (now known as Christopher Brennan Award)
* 1982 Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to literature [ [http://www.itsanhonour.gov.au/honours/honour_roll/search.cfm?aus_award_id=869889&search_type=advanced&showInd=true AM 1982] ]


External links

* [http://www.the-rathouse.com/RDF_essay_RC.html R.D. Fitzgerald: Surveyor of the Literary Landscape] , biographical essay by Rafe Champion.
* [http://www.lib.adfa.edu.au/speccoll/finding_aids/fitzgerald_robert.html Reference Number: MS 4 Guide to the Papers of Robert D. FitzGerald] Academy Library, UNSW@ADFA (Retrieved 13 August 2007)

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