These notes and references are evidential sources for Life and Survey

  1. Entries for Hagger in International Who’s Who in Poetry, International Who’s Who of Authors and Writers, Dictionary of International Biography, The Cambridge Blue Book, The Writers Directory, Contemporary Authors.
  2. Hagger’s lecture to the English-Speaking Union at St Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Richmond on 15 October 1998.
  3. See Charles Beauclerk‘s website.
  4. This poem is in Collected Poems.
  5. Sebastian Barker, then Chairman of the Poetry Society, wrote in a 20-page review for Acumen on Hagger’s first six books (Selected Poems, The Fire and the Stones, The Universe and the Light, Awakening to the Light, A Mystic Way and A White Radiance, the first Collected Poems), ‘Between Establishment and Vision’, 1994: “His poetic felicities include a poetic mix of Eliot, Pound and Blake;…genuine visionary learnings and occasional lyric beauty.”
  6. Hagger’s bound diary entry for 16 July 1970 details his visit to Ezra Pound and of some of the topics discussed, including Hagger’s intention to write a poem in 12 books. See Appendix to the one-volume edition of Overlord, pp.935-36, for this entry and an extract from A Mystic Way about his visit to Ezra Pound; and Overlord bk 1, lines 136-142 and Armageddon bk 12, lines 3342-3350 for references to his visit to Rapallo.
  7. See end of one-volume edition for letters about Overlord from Ted Hughes, then British Poet Laureate, who commented on 3 December 1996, “He hits a pace, a tilt, that really carries the reader along….Everything comes as a subordinate clause to his dramatic momentum, a hand waving out the express train window.”
  8. Ted Hughes had reflected on his comment (see note 6) for 21 months. He had written to Hagger on 8 July 1994, “I look forward to seeing your epic.” On 20 March 1995 he wrote after receiving the first volume and the publisher’s request to comment, “I started reading it with fascination – I rose to it, the omnivorous masterful way you grasp the materials…Look forward now to reading the rest. I’ll try to get something by tomorrow. But will it help? Do comments help? Doesn’t the whisper go further than the shout?” On 28 January 1996 he wrote, “I’m admiring the way you bite off and chew up these great chunks of history in your epic. It’s good for verse – to become the workhorse for sheer mass of material. Pressure of the actual – the resources to deal with it drawn from elsewhere. I want to see the whole thing finished, though, before I make any comment….Keep up the good work.” The comment delayed from March 1995 finally came on 3 December 1996 (see note 6), after the completion of the work on 23 November 1996. It began “What a prodigious amount of work!” Fuller versions of Hughes’s letters regarding Overlord can be found in the one-volume edition of Overlord, pp.946-947.
  9. Hagger, The Libyan Revolution, Preface, pix.
  10. Asa Briggs commented, “One of the most powerful tours de force I have come across in the whole of my academic life.”
  11. Ted Hughes, then British Poet Laureate, wrote a 6-page letter to Hagger dated 19 March 1994 about his first five books (Selected Poems, The Fire and the Stones, The Universe and the Light, Awakening to the Light, A Mystic Way), which was published in Letters of Ted Hughes, selected and edited by Christopher Reid, Faber and Faber, 2007, pp.663-668. This letter states, “I’m sure you’ve seen a genuine historical pattern and law” (p.663), and also says, “I read your books with a sort of automatic assent. You are saying what I have always believed – and I mean always” (p.664).
  12. Sebastian Barker, past Chairman of the Poetry Society, commented: “It takes the esemplastic power of art to make a coherent shape out of so rich a chaos as history.”
  13. Review in Nexus, vol. 13, no. 5, August-September 2006 on Hagger’s “unique stance”.
  14. Review of The Syndicate in Nexus, vol. 13, no. 3.
  15. Reference to both The Secret History of the West and The Syndicate in Malachi Martin.
  16. Adrian Cairns, ‘The Poet with Big Ideas’, review of The Universe and the Light in The Universalist (publication of Quaker Universalist Group), no. 39, September 1993: “His viewpoint is a Universalist one.”
  17. ‘Universalism and the New Metaphysics’, day of lectures at Regent’s College London on 15 October 1994 including lecture by Hagger. Related article in August 1994 issue of The Scientific and Medical Network’s subscription magazine Network.
  18. David Lorimer, Programme Director, Scientific and Medical Network, commented: “In this magisterial work Nicholas Hagger unites the rational and intuitive strands of Western philosophy in the light of the latest findings from physics, cosmology, biology, ecology and psychology. His in-depth exposition of these sciences and their philosophical implications is breathtaking in scope and detail and fully justifies his declaration of a Metaphysical Revolution, which also has profound consequences for our understanding of world affairs. This is one of the most important philosophical books to appear since Whitehead’s Process and Reality eighty years ago and deserves the widest possible readership. A stupendous achievement.”
  19. Christopher Macann, lecturer in philosophy at the University of Bordeaux, commented: “The scope of Hagger’s book is immense. Universalism is a call to a philosopher to abandon the specialisms (in particular logic and language) and to attempt, once again, the kind of Grand Unified Theory of Everything that has marked the discipline from the beginning. Universalism has the potentiality to be as potent a movement in the 21st century as Existentialism was in the post-war world.”
  20. Frederick Tomlin, T.S. Eliot, A Friendship, Routledge, 1998, pp.238-9.
  21. Laurens van der Post commented on The Universe and the Light: “How much William James would have supported all those who value the quality and range of a truly comprehensive modern awareness as Nicholas Hagger does in all he has written with a rare intellectual passion in all his work since The Fire and the Stones.”
  22. David Bohm commented on The Universe and the Light: “This attempt to bring together physics and the philosophical vision of the cosmos in a coherent whole is interesting and worthwhile.”
  23. Edgard Gunzig, Professor of Cosmology in the Department of Theoretical Physics at Free University, Brussels, on The Universe and the Light: “An outstanding and unexpected marriage between cosmology and its metaphysical counterpart.”
  24. Mary Midgley, British philosopher commented on The Universe and the Light: “Sums up the rise and dominance of reductivism to date admirably. Drawn together like this, the story is startling….Challenging, serious and timely.”
  25. East Anglian Daily Times, 1 October 1997 (‘Bridging the cultural divide‘, interview with Hagger about his lecture in Aldeburgh on a revolution in thought and culture).
  26. Geoff Ward, ‘Book Review: The World Government, 29 November 2010 for Suite 101: “This cogent but potentially highly controversial study of political universalism…. Hagger’s is an extremely challenging philosophical vision of a better future in the traditions of Plato and Kant….Hagger ends with an appeal to the President of the USA and to the UN to have the courage and foresight to create the universalist world state.”
  27. Christopher Macann commented: “Universalism is the most important movement in thought and art since Existentialism.”


Nicholas Hagger