David Levin was born on November 21, 1924, in York, Pennsylvania. After attending local public schools and serving in the Army Air Force during the Second World War, he took three degrees at Harvard: A.B. (magna cum laude), 1947; A.M., 1949; and Ph.D., 1955. For nineteen years he was an English professor at Stanford University. In 1971 he came to the University of Virginia, as Commonwealth Professor of English. In 1992 he became Thomas Jefferson Professor of Arts & Sciences, Emeritus. Professor Levin died in 1998.