William Leonard Courtenay was a journalist. In 1874 he married his first wife, Cordelia Blanche Place. His second wife was Janet Elizabeth Hogarth.
Courteny graduated from University College, Oxford and was appointed a fellow of Merton College in 1972. He then became headmaster at his old school, Somersetshire College, in Bath, and in 1878 a fellow and tutor of Philosophy at New College, Oxford. He was involved in the foundation of Oxford's New Theatre and in the establishment of the Oxford University Dramatic Society; he himself acted in Greek plays. He was also treasurer of the Oxford University Boat Club. However, he gave up his academic career in 1890 in order to become literary editor of the Daily Telegraph. He also edited Murray's Magazine and from 1894 the Fortnightly Review. He wrote books on philosophy and literature, in addition to two plays. He also became director of the publishing firm Chapman & Hall.
In 1874 JW invited Courtenay to the private view of his first one man show being held at the Flemish Gallery in Pall Mall [#00698].
Sladen, Douglas, Twenty Years of My Life, London, 1915; The Annual Register, London, 1928; Mrs J. E. Courtney, The Making of an Editor, London, 1930.