Edgar Hilton


A number of internet websites (led, apparently, by a Wikipedia entry which has now been amended) refer to Wilfred Owen's failure to achieve high Matriculation honours (and a college scholarship) in 1910, and attribute this failure, mysteriously, to the death of an "uncle and role model", named Edgar Hilton, in a "hunting accident".

Owen's surviving family know nothing of any family member or friend called Edgar Hilton, and he is mentioned nowhere in Owen's letters of 1910. This seems to be a case of an overspill from a different life-story. Unfortunately the websites involved do not supply a current address for corrections. It is probably not a point of major importance, but the WOA would like students and researchers to be aware that there seems to be no historical basis at all for this frequently-repeated "fact". Wilfred Owen passed his Matriculation exam., but not with a starry enough result to gain him a University scholarship. Whatever the reasons for this, the WOA can find no evidence of any family bereavement at the time.