Alan Alexander Milne was born in Hampstead in 1882 and attended an independent school run by his father before studying mathematics at Cambridge. After university he worked as an Assistant Editor at the magazine Punch and established himself as a successful author of both plays and novels, including The Red House Mystery until, with the publication of When We Were Very Young in 1924 and Winnie-the-Pooh in 1926 his career took a very different turn. Milne continued to produce works for adults but occasionally resented the success of his children's stories, which overshadowed much of his other work.
In 1952 A. A. Milne suffered a stroke after brain surgery and retired to his country home in Sussex as an invalid. He died there four years later.