Richard Cowper, pseudonym of Colin Middleton Murry Biography
(1926–2002), pseudonym of Colin Middleton Murry, One Hand Clapping, Shadows on the Grass, The Golden Valley
British writer, born in Bridport, Dorset, the son of J. M. Murry, educated at Brasenose College, Oxford. As Colin Middleton Murry he wrote One Hand Clapping (1975) and Shadows on the Grass (1977), which were vivid memoirs of his famous family. As Colin Murry, he published several novels, including The Golden Valley (1958) and A Path to the Sea (1961). Cowper became known for his elegiac science fiction portraits of a fragile England threatened by transcendental change; among these are Breakthrough (1967), Time out of Mind (1973), and The Twilight of Briareus (1974), which is perhaps his best novel. The Road to Corlay (1978) and its sequels, set in a similar landscape, concern a new Church which soon becomes doctrinaire. Cowper's elegant stories have been collected in The Custodians (1976), The Web of the Magi (1980), and The Tithonian Factor (1984).