by George J. Dance

Downes np

Gwladys Downes (1915-2005). Courtesy Brock University.

Gwladys Violet Downes (April 22, 1915 - September 17, 2005) was a Canadian poet and academic.[1]


Gwladys Downes1

Gwladys Downes (1915-2006). Courtesy University of Victoria.

Downes was born in Victoria, British Columbia, the daughter of Doris Gwendoline (Bywater-Jones) and Gordon Downes. She attended the University of British Columbia (UBC), where she received a B.A. in 1934 and an M.A. in 1940. She also received teaching diplomas from UBC and the Sorbonne in the 1930's, and a Ph.D. from the Sorbonne in 1953.[2]

She taught English and (mainly) French at Duncan High School in Duncan, British Columbia (1936-1939), UBC (1940-1941 and 1946-1949) and the University of Victoria (1951-1978).[2]

Besides writing original poetry, Downes translated the work of Quebec poets.[3]


Downes was awarded a Canada Council Senior Arts Award in 1969.



  • Lost Diver. Fredericton, NB: Fiddlehead Poetry Books, 1955.
  • When We Lie Together. West Vancouver, BC: Klanak Press, 1973.
  • Out of the Violent Dark: Poems and translations. Victoria, BC: Sono Nis Press, 1978.
  • Cannibal Speech. Toronto: League of Canadian Poets, 1980.
  • House of Cedars. Victoria, BC: Ekstasis Editions. 1999.

Except where noted, bibliographical information courtesy Brock University.[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. "Gwladys Downes," Gwladys Downes obituary, Victoria Times-Colonist, September 28 2005, Web, Apr. 5, 2017.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Gwladys (Violet) Downes Biography, Dictionary of Literary Biography (Thomson-Gale, 2005-2006). BookRags, Web, Feb. 11, 2013.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Gwladys Downes 1915- , Canadian Women Poets, Brock University,, Web, July 1, 2012.

External linksEdit

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