Literary historian and scholar; University Professor of English literature. Born– Sumter County, Ala., September 2, 1865. Parents– Charles and Mary (Matthews) Manly. Education– Furman University, 1883; A.M., 1889; Harvard University, Ph. D., 1900. Military intelligence service, WWI, 1917-1919. Employed by Brown University, 1884-1898; University of Chicago, 1898-1933. Specialized in the study of early English literature; best known for his editing and scholarly research on Chaucer. Exchange professor or visiting lecturer, University of Gottingen, Lowell Institute, British Academy, Royal Society of Literature; editor, 1908-1930. Member and President Modern Language Association; member Mediaeval Academy, Modern Humanities Research Association, British Shakespeare Association. Received five honorary doctorates during his lifetime. His colleagues and students at the University honored him with a feistschriften, The Manly Anniversary Studies in Language and Literature, in 1923. Died April 2, 1940.
Who Was Who in America, Vol. 1, The National Cyclopedia of Amerian Biography, Vol. 48; American National Biography online.
Chaucer and the Rhetoricians. London; Oxford University Press, 1926.
Contemporary British Literature; Bibliographies and Study Outlines. New York; Harcourt, 1921.
English Poetry (1170-1892). Boston; Ginn, 1916.
Good Reading. New York; Scribner, 1926.
Junior High School English. Boston; D.C. Heath, 1916.
Marco Polo and the Squire’s Tale. Baltimore; Publication of the Modern Language Association, 1896.
The Piers Plowman Controversy …. London; Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co., 1910.
Piers the Plowman and Its Sequence, …. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press, 1908.
Some New Light on Chaucer. New York; Holt, 1926.
The Bailey-Manly Spelling Book. Boston; Houghton, 1908.
Better Advertising; a Practical Manual of the Principles of Advertising. Chicago; F. J. Drake Co., 1921.
Better Business English; a Working Manual …. Chicago; J. F. Drake, 1921.
Contemporary American Authors; a Critical Survey and 219 Bio-bibliographies. New York; Harcourt, 1922.
Contemporary American Literature; Bibliographies and Study Outlines. New York; Harcourt, 1935.
Contemporary British Literature; a Critical Survey and 232 Author-bibliographies. New York; Harcourt, 1935.
Contemporary British Literature; Outlines for Study, Indexes, Bibliographies. New York; Harcourt, 1928.
Lessons in the Speaking and Writing of English …. Boston; D.C. Heath, 1912.
A Manual for Writers; Covering the Needs of Authors for Information on Rules of Writing and Practices in Printing. Chicago; University of Chicago, 1915.
The Writer’s Index of Good Form and Good English. New York; Holt, 1923.
The Writing of English. New York; Holt, 1919.
Canterbury Tales. New York; Holt, 1928.
English Prose and Poetry (1137-1892). New York; Ginn, 1916.
The Poems and Plays of William Vaughn Moody. New York; Scribner, 1887.
… Shakespeare’s MacBeth. New York; Longmans, Green, 1896.
Specimens of the Pre-Shakespearean Drama…. Boston; Ginn, 1897.
La Seinte Resureccion from the Paris and Canterbury mss. Oxford, Miss.; B. Blackwell, 1943.
The Text of the Canterbury Tales… . Chicago; University of Chicago Press, 1940.
Cambridge History of English Literature, Encyclopedia Britannica, 11 ed.
The papers of John Matthews Manly are held by the library at the University of Chicago.