Mathew Arnold was the eldest son of Dr Thomas Arnold of Rugby, and married Frances Lucy Wightman.
Poet and critic, he studied at Oxford, and was a lay inspector of schools from 1851-1886. He established his reputation as a poet with such works as Poems: A New Edition (1853-54), which included 'The Scholar Gipsy', and New Poems (1867), which included 'Dover Beach'. He was appointed professor of poetry at Oxford in 1857, and published several critical and religious works, including Essays in Criticism (1865, 1888) and Culture and Anarchy (1869), Literature and Dogma (1872) and Last Essays on Church and Religion (1877).
Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford, 2004.