Louis Auchincloss (born September 27, 1917) is a prolific U.S. novelist, historian and essayist. Born in New York City, he grew up among the privileged classes he was to write about, attending Groton and Yale University where he was editor of the Yale Literary Magazine. After serving in the Navy in World War II, Auchincloss wondered whether to become a writer or a lawyer and finally realized he could do both (although he did not complete his undergraduate studies at Yale, he was admitted to and attended law school at the University of Virginia), producing a fiction book a year while serving as a wills and trusts attorney with Hawkins, Delafield & Wood, a major Wall Street law firm.
Among Auchincloss's best-known books are the multigenerational sagas The House of Five Talents; Portrait in Brownstone and East Side Story; The Rector of Justin, the tale of the beloved headmaster of a school like Groton trying to deal with changing times; and The Embezzler, a look at white-collar crime. Auchincloss has patterned his writing after that of Henry James and Edith Wharton.
Auchincloss received the National Medal of Arts in 2005.