He was born in Madrid, Spain with the name Jorge Augustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana.
Santayana moved to Boston in 1872, and took the name George he is generally known by in the English language. He studied with William James at Harvard University, where he became a professor of Philosophy until he retired upon gaining an inheritance in 1912. He then lived for several years in Paris and in Oxford, England, before settling in Rome in 1925.
Santayana wrote some 18 volumes of philosophy, as well as poetry, a novel (The Last Puritan which was a best seller in 1935), and an autobiography.
Santayana's students went on to fame and glory as well. The most prominent of his students was Harry Austryn Wolfson.
The Sense of Beauty (1896)
The Life of Reason (1905-6)
Three Philosophical Poets (1910)
Soliloquies in England and Later Soliloquies (1922)
Scepticism and Animal Faith (1923)
Dialogues in Limbo (1925)
Platonism and the Spiritual Life (1927)
The Realms of Being (1927)
The Realm of Matter (1930)
Some Turns of Thought in Modern Philosophy (1933)
The Last Puritan, a memoir in the form of a novel (1935)
Obiter Scripta (1936)