C.J. Dennis Associated Material

David Low

David Low was born in New Zealand in 1891, and emigrated to Australia when he was 20. He had been contributing cartoons to local newspapers since he was seven and subsequently joined the Melbourne office of the Bulletin in 1911. It was there that he met C.J. Dennis and Hal Gye, lodging with Dennis at one period and producing the cover for Dennis's first collection of poetry, Backblock Ballads and Other Verses. In 1918 Low made his reputation in Australia with The Billy Book which was based on then Australian Prime Minister William 'Billy' Hughes. He moved to England in 1919 where he worked as a political cartoonist on various newspapers such as the Star, the Evening Standard, and the Manchester Guardian - with his most significant work being the creation of the Colonel Blimp character. He was knighted in 1962 and died in 1963.

Low wrote his Autobiography in 1956 and Colin Seymour-Ure and Jim Schoff produced an appreciation of his life's work in 1985 titled David Low.

Alec Chisholm took exception to a couple of statements made in Low's autobiography and published his views in the Bulletin in 1957 under the title "Low and Den". Early the next year Low had responded to Chisholm in a personal letter and Chisholm clarified the misunderstanding about this poem in "Low and Den" published, again in the Bulletin in February 1958.

David Low produced several portraits/caricatures of C.J. Dennis as follows:

  Den hiking
  Den in town
  Den as a minstrel

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2002