Hugh Chisholm

Hugh Chisholm (/ˈɪzəm/; 22 February 1866 – 29 September 1924) was a British journalist, and editor of the 10th, 11th and 12th editions of the Encyclopædia Britannica.

Hugh Chisholm
Born22 February 1866 (1866-02-22)
London, England
Died29 September 1924 (1924-09-30)
London, England
Occupationjournalist and encyclopædia editor
Known for10th, 11th, and 12th editions of the Encyclopædia Britannica

He was born in London, a son of Henry Williams Chisholm (1809–1901), Warden of the Standards at the Board of Trade. Hugh Chisholm was educated at Felsted School and Christ Church, Oxford. He graduated from the latter in 1888 with a first class in Literae Humaniores. He read for the Bar and was called to the Middle Temple in 1892.

Chisholm worked for The St James's Gazette as assistant editor from 1892 and was appointed editor in 1897. During these years, he also contributed numerous articles on political, financial and literary subjects to the weekly journals and monthly reviews, becoming well known as a literary critic and conservative publicist. He moved in 1899 to The Standard as chief leader-writer and moved in 1900 to The Times, to act as co-editor with Sir Donald Mackenzie Wallace and President Arthur Twining Hadley of Yale University on preparation of the eleven volumes forming the 10th edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. In 1903, he became editor-in-chief for the 11th edition, which was completed under his direction in 1910, and published as a whole by the Cambridge University Press, in 29 volumes, in 1911. He subsequently planned and edited the Britannica Year-Book (1913).

Chisholm had been suggested as replacement as editor of The Times as an alternative to Dawson, and in 1913, following his return from America overseeing the printing of The Britannica Year-Book, he was appointed day editor. In August 1913 he was appointed a director of the company. He was financial editor throughout World War I, resigning in 1920 when he embarked on the editorship of the three volumes forming the 12th edition of Encyclopædia Britannica, published in 1922.

The mathematician Grace Chisholm was his sister.


  • The Times, 30 September 1924, p 14, Issue 43770, Col d. Obituary of Chisholm.
  • Janet E. Courtney: An Oxford Portrait Gallery, (London) 1931, pp 167–157. Janet Courtney, née Hogarth, worked for The Times Book Club and was later responsible for the arrangement of the Index volume to the 11th and 12th editions of Encyclopædia Britannica.
  • Anon, History of "The Times", Vol 3, 1884 - 1912, (1939) pp 121, 519, 755, 829
  • Ibid, Vol 4, 1912 - 1920, (1947) pp 143, 137, 138, 208, 472
  • Dictionary of National Biography, article "Hugh Chisholm"
  •  Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1922). "Chisholm, Hugh" . Encyclopædia Britannica. 30 (12th ed.). London & New York. p. 669.
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