||Attended Trinity College at Cambridge, where he was a member of the secret society the Apostles and a close friend of the philosopher G.E. Moore, whose Principia Ethica was an enormous influence on the later outlook of the Bloomsbury group. Married Mary (Molly) Warre-Cornish in 1906. Asked by Roger Fry to be the secretary for the First Post-Impressionist Exhibition in 1910, he traveled throughout Europe acquiring the work of then-unknowns such as Van Gogh, Cézanne, and Matisse. Went to France as an ambulance driver in the First World War, 1914. Held the position of literary editor for the New Statesman from 1920-27. Knighted in 1951.
" 'Memory', he often said, 'is an excellent compositor'. And in the midst of a group which included Lytton Strachey, Virginia Woolf, and Maynard Keynes, he stood out in his command of the past, and in his power to rearrange it. I remember one paper of his in particular if it can be called a paper. Perched away in a corner of Duncan Grant's studio, he had a suit-case open before him. The lid of the case, which he propped up, would be useful to rest his manuscript upon, he told us. On he read, delighting us as usual, with his brilliancy, and humanity, and wisdom, until owing to a slight wave of his hand the suit-case unfortunately fell over. Nothing was inside it. There was no paper. He had been improvising."
E.M. Forster, from "Tributes to Desmond MacCarthy, II", Listener (June 26, 1952)
The Court Theatre 1904-1907: A Commentary and Criticism (1907)
Portraits I (1931)
Leslie Stephen (1937)