Sidney Edward Paget was a British illustrator of the Victorian era, best known for his illustrations that accompanied Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories in The Strand magazine. Sidney Paget was the fifth of nine children born to Robert Paget, the vestry clerk of St. James and St. John in Clerkenwell and Martha Paget, a music professor. In 1881 Paget entered the Royal Academy Schools. Here he befriended Alfred Morris Butler, an architecture student who may have become the model for Paget's illustrations of Dr. John Watson. Between 1879 and 1905, Paget contributed eighteen miscellaneous paintings, including nine portraits, to the Royal Academy exhibitions. Paget's drawings appeared in the Strand Magazine, the Pictorial World, The Sphere, The Graphic, The Illustrated London News, The Pall Mall Magazine, his work became well known in both the United Kingdom and United States, he provided illustrations for Arthur Morrison's Martin Hewitt detective stories, Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes work, doing much to popularise both series.
On 1 June 1893, Sidney Paget married daughter of William Hounsfield, a farmer. They had two sons together. Sidney Paget died in Margate on 28 January 1908, after suffering from a painful chest complaint for the last few years of his life. According to his death certificate, the cause of Sidney Paget's death was "Mediastinal tumour, 3 years, exhaustion." Mediastinal tumors are growths. As the tumor grows, the patient's breathing becomes more constricted. It's a rare condition and, in the early 1900s, it was a painful and certain death sentence, and now, no known causes exist, there are no known links between the condition and any substance. Paget was buried in East Finchley Cemetery. Two brothers, H. M. Paget and Wal Paget were successful portraitists and illustrators. Today, Sidney Paget is best known as the creator of the popular image of Sherlock Holmes from the original publication of Conan Doyle's stories in the Strand Magazine, he was inadvertently hired to illustrate The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, a series of twelve short stories that ran from July 1891 through December 1892, when the publishers accidentally sent him the letter of commission rather than to his younger brother, Walter Paget.
Despite the held belief that Paget based Holmes' appearance on that of Walter, his brother Henry Marriott Paget denied this was the case. "The assertion that the artist's brother Walter, or any other person, served as model for the portrait of Sherlock Holmes is incorrect."In 1893, Paget illustrated The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, published in The Strand as further episodes of the Adventures. When Sir Arthur Conan Doyle revived the Sherlock Holmes series with The Hound of the Baskervilles, serialised in The Strand in 1901–02, he requested that Paget be the illustrator. Paget went on to illustrate another short story series, The Return of Sherlock Holmes, in 1903–04. In all, he illustrated 37 Holmes short stories, his illustrations have influenced interpretations of the detective in fiction and drama. The Strand became one of Great Britain's most prestigious fiction magazines, with the Holmes series its most popular feature; as Holmes' popularity grew, Paget's illustrations became more elaborate.
Beginning with "The Adventure of the Final Problem" in 1893 every Holmes story in The Strand featured a full-page illustration as well as many smaller pictures within the text. Paget is credited with giving the first deerstalker cap and Inverness cape to Holmes, details that were never mentioned in Arthur Conan Doyle's writing; the cap and coat first appear in an illustration for "The Boscombe Valley Mystery" in 1891 and reappear in "The Adventure of Silver Blaze" in 1893. They appear in a few illustrations from The Return of Sherlock Holmes. Altogether, Sidney Paget did some 356 published drawings for the Sherlock Holmes series. After his death in 1908, other illustrators found that they had to imitate Paget's style when drawing Sherlock Holmes; the Paget illustrations have been reprinted in many Holmes anthologies and have become iconic in depicting the fictional character. A complete set of Strand issues featuring the illustrated Sherlock Holmes tales is one of the rarest and most expensive collector's items in publishing history.
Paget's original 6.75 x 10.5-inch drawing of "Holmes and Moriarty in Mortal Combat at the Edge of the Reichenbach Falls" was sold by Sotheby's in New York on 16 November 2004 for $220,800. The two-handed clasp that Paget shows Holmes using on Moriarty in the illustration was used by Holmes for the same scene in the 2011 film Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, though the specific description of the fight is never mentioned in the book. Works by Sidney Paget at Project Gutenberg Works by or about Sidney Paget at Internet Archive Sidney Paget at Library of Congress Authorities, with 10 catalogue records
Mary Angela Dickens
Mary Angela Dickens was an English novelist and journalist of the late Victorian and Edwardian eras, the oldest grandchild of the novelist Charles Dickens. She died on the 136th anniversary of her grandfather's birth. Born at 46 Gloucester Road in London, named after her aunt, Mary Dickens, Mary Angela Dickens was the eldest of eight children of Charles Dickens, Jr. and his wife Elisabeth Matilda Moule Dickens and the granddaughter of Charles Dickens, the famous novelist. She was the niece of the noted barrister and judge, Sir Henry Fielding Dickens, the painter Kate Perugini, she was christened on 19 December 1862 at St Mark's church in St Pancras in London. In the Dickens family she was known as'Mekitty', as a child she called her grandfather'Venerables'. Mary Angela Dickens and Charles Dickens were close, when she scalded her leg and foot with boiling water while staying at his country home Gads Hill Place he sat beside her bed and held her hand, reassuring her that he would make her well.
As a child she was taken to hear Dickens perform A Christmas Carol during one of his last public readings, in life recollected her shock at seeing her grandfather crying over the death of Tiny Tim. She wrote:'The "Venerables" on the platform was quite a stranger to me, his proceedings were so eccentric as to be most alarming, he took no notice of my mother. And to Tiny Tim himself I owe my one intensely painful and distressing memory of my grandfather, for the climax of my discomfort was reached at last when it dawned upon my poor little faculties that "Venerables" was "crying." I never read the little scene in the carol where Bob Cratchit breaks down – the moment, I suppose, of this tragedy – without remembering the horror and dismay which seized upon me then. I knew nothing whatever about acting. To me his distress was real. I had never before seen a grown-up person cry. I had not known that they did or could do so, and that "Venerables", of all people in the world, should cry with all those people looking on, that no one should dare – as it seemed to me – to express sympathy, or offer consolation, was nothing short of an upheaval in my universe.'
After the death of Charles Dickens her father bought Gads Hill, she and her siblings lived there until 1879 when Charles Dickens, Jr. was forced to sell it after getting into financial difficulties. On the death of Charles Dickens, her father inherited the magazine All the Year Round, Mary Angela Dickens published some of her earliest work in this periodical, she authored several popular sentimental and melodramatic novels during the 1890s, including Cross Currents her best known work, A Mere Cypher, A Valiant Ignorance, Prisoners of Silence. Her works included Against the Tide, On the Edge of a Precipice, she produced a number of books for children based on the novels of her grandfather, including Children's Stories from Dickens and Dickens' Dream Children. These were illustrated by Harold Copping. A 1911 copy of her Children's Stories from Dickens, from a limited edition of 500 copies signed by herself and four other granddaughters of Charles Dickens, was owned by Eleanor Roosevelt, it was sold at auction by Christie's at their New York sale in 2001.
By the early 1900s her sensationalist style of writing had fallen out of fashion, by about 1916 she had stopped writing. However, her children's books based on the works of her grandfather continued to be popular. During her years she lived at 3 Baliol Road in Hitchin in Hertfordshire with her cousin, Margaret Alice Moule. Mary Angela Dickens died aged 85 on 7 February 1948, on the 136th anniversary of Charles Dickens's birth, she never married, on her death left £2799 10s 2d to her cousin, Margaret Dickens Whinney. She was buried in Hitchin Cemetery in the same grave as Margaret Alice Moule. A Mist of Error P. F. Collier, New York Little David Copperfield, etc Raphael Tuck & Sons, Ltd. London, Berlin, New York, Cross Currents Chapman & Hall, London Nobody's Fault Peter Fenelon Collier, New York A Mere Cypher. A Novel Macmillan & Co. London & New York Children's Stories from Dickens Raphael Tuck & Sons, London A Valiant Ignorance Macmillan & Co. London & New York Prisoners of Silence Osgood, McIlvaine & Co.
London Some Women's Ways Jarrold & Sons, London The Love That Was Chicago & New York, Rand McNally, 1897 Against the Tide Hutchinson & Co. London On the Edge of a Precipice Co.. London The Wastrel Hutchinson & Co. London Unveiled, Other Stories Digby, Long & Co. London The Debtor Hutchinson & Co. London Sanctuary R. & T. Washbourne, London Dickens' Dream Children Raphael Tuck,'Her Inheritance', in All the Year Round, third series, Vol. 1, Nos. 24 & 25, 1889. This was not credited on publication, but the later'A Valiant Ignorance' shows her as author of this.'Margery', in All the Year Round, third series, Vol. 2, Nos. 33–35, 1889'Kitty's Victim', in All the Year Round, third series, Vol. 2, Nos. 51 & 52, 1889. This was not credited on publication, but the later'A Valiant Ignorance' shows her as author of this.'A Social Success', in All the Year Round, Christmas Number, 1889'A Mist of Error', All the Year Round, Extra Summer Number, 1890'Cross Currents', a novel serialised in All the Year Round, third series, Vol. 5 & 6, 1891'An Outstanding
E. W. Hornung
Ernest William Hornung was an English author and poet known for writing the A. J. Raffles series of stories about a gentleman thief in late 19th-century London. Hornung was educated at Uppingham School, he drew on his Australian experiences as a background when he began writing short stories and novels. In 1898 he wrote "In the Chains of Crime", which introduced his sidekick, Bunny Manders; the series of Raffles short stories were collected for sale in book form in 1899, two further books of Raffles short stories followed, as well as a poorly received novel. Aside from his Raffles stories, Hornung was a prodigious writer of fiction, publishing numerous books from 1890, with A Bride from the Bush to his 1914 novel The Crime Doctor; the First World War brought an end to Hornung's fictional output. His son, was killed at the Second Battle of Ypres in July 1915. Hornung joined the YMCA in England in France, where he helped run a canteen and library, he published two collections of poetry during the war, afterwards, one further volume of verse and an account of his time spent in France, Notes of a Camp-Follower on the Western Front.
Hornung's fragile constitution was further weakened by the stress of his war work. To aid his recuperation, he and his wife visited the south of France in 1921, he fell ill from influenza on the journey, died on 22 March 1921, aged 54. Although much of Hornung's work has fallen into obscurity, his Raffles stories continued to be popular, have formed numerous film and television adaptations. Hornung's stories dealt with a wider range of themes than crime: he examined scientific and medical developments, guilt and the unequal role played by women in society. Two threads that run through a sizeable proportion of his books are cricket. Hornung was born Ernest William Hornung on 7 June 1866 at Cleveland Villas, Middlesbrough, he was the third son, youngest of eight children, of John Peter Hornung and his wife Harriet née Armstrong. John was christened Johan Petrus Hornung in the Transylvania region of Hungary and, after working in Hamburg for a shipping firm, had moved to Britain in the 1840s as a coal and iron merchant.
John married Harriet in March 1848. At the age of 13 Hornung joined St Ninian's Preparatory School in Moffat, before enrolling at Uppingham School in 1880. Hornung was well liked at school, developed a lifelong love of cricket despite limited skills at the game, which were further worsened by bad eyesight, asthma and, according to his biographer Peter Rowland, a permanent state of poor health; when Hornung was 17 his health worsened. On his arrival he was employed as a tutor to the Parsons family in Mossgiel in the Riverina, south-western New South Wales. In addition to teaching, he spent time working in remote sheep stations in the outback and contributing material to the weekly magazine The Bulletin. Although he spent only two years in Australia, the experience was "the making of him and... the making of his career as a writer", according to Rowland. Another biographer, Mark Valentine, wrote that Hornung "seems to have regarded this period as one of the most satisfying of his life". Hornung returned to England before the death of his father in November.
From a position of relative prosperity, John's coal and iron business had encountered difficulties and he was in financially straitened circumstances by the time of his death. Hornung found work in London as a journalist and story writer publishing his work under a pseudonym, although in 1887 he published his first story under his own name, "Stroke of Five", which appeared in Belgravia magazine, his work as a journalist was during the period of Jack the Ripper and the series of five murders, which were undertaken against a background of rising urban crime in London. Hornung had worked on the novel manuscript he brought back from Australia and, between July and November 1890, the story, "A Bride from the Bush", was published in five parts in The Cornhill Magazine, it was released that year as a book—his first. The story—described by Rowland as an "assured, graceful comedy of manners"—used Hornung's knowledge of Australia as a backdrop, the device of an Australian bride to examine British social behaviour.
In 1891 Hornung became a member of two cricket clubs: the Idlers, whose members included Arthur Conan Doyle, Robert Barr and Jerome K. Jerome, the Strand club. Hornung knew Doyle's sister, Constance Aimée Monica Doyle, whom he had met when he visited Portugal. Connie was described by Doyle's biographer, Andrew Lycett, as being attractive, "with pre-Raphaelite looks... the most sought-after of the Doyle daughters". By December 1892, when Hornung and Jerome visited the Black Museum at Scotland Yard and Connie were engaged, in 1893 Hornung dedicated his second novel, Tiny Luttrell, "to C. A. M. D." They were married on 27 September 1893, although Doyle was not at the wedding and relations between the two writers w
House of Commons
The House of Commons is the elected lower house of the bicameral parliaments of the United Kingdom and Canada and was the name of the lower houses of the Kingdom of England, Kingdom of Great Britain, Kingdom of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Southern Ireland. Equivalent bodies in other countries which were once part of the British Empire include the United States House of Representatives, the Australian House of Representatives, the New Zealand House of Representatives, India's Lok Sabha. In the UK and Canada, the Commons holds much more legislative power than the respective upper house of parliament; the leader of the majority party in the House of Commons becomes the prime minister. Since 2010 the House of Commons of the United Kingdom has had 650 elected members, since 2015 the House of Commons of Canada has had 338 members; the Commons' functions are to consider through debate new laws and changes to existing ones, authorise taxes, provide scrutiny of the policy and expenditure of the Government.
It has the power to give a Government a vote of no confidence. The House of Commons of the Kingdom of England evolved from an undivided parliament to serve as the voice of the tax-paying subjects of the counties and of the boroughs. Knights of the shire, elected from each county, were landowners, while the borough members were from the merchant classes; these members represented subjects of the Crown who were not Lords Temporal or Spiritual, who themselves sat in the House of Lords. The House of Commons gained its name. Members of the Commons were all elected, while members of the upper house were summoned to parliament by the monarch on the basis of a title which would be inherited after the holder's death, or because they held a position in the realm that warranted special recognition, such as the bishops of the English and Welsh dioceses. After the Reformation, these bishops were those of the Church of England. Since the 19th century, the British and Canadian Houses of Commons have become representative, as suffrage has been extended.
Both bodies are now elected via universal adult suffrage. However, from the Middle Ages until the early 20th century there was a tendency to limit the suffrage in various ways, creating by the 18th century a large number of rotten boroughs. In all countries, the House of Commons now as in the past may be prorogued for an election or some other purpose only by the Crown, represented outside the United Kingdom by the Governor General of each Commonwealth realm; the House of Commons of England sat from 1295 to 1706 The House of Commons of Great Britain 1707 to 1801 The House of Commons of the United Kingdom since 1801 House of Commons of Ireland 1297 to 1801 House of Commons of Southern Ireland 1921 to 1922 House of Commons of Northern Ireland 1921 to 1972 The House of Commons of Canada on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa, Ontario since 1867 The lower house of the General Assembly of North Carolina was known as the House of Commons between 1760 and 1868. The House of Commons was the lower house of the 8-month Second Republic of South Korea House of Lords Lower House House of Assembly Legislative Assembly National Assembly Lok Sabha House of Representatives
Victoria was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India. Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke and the King died in 1820, Victoria was raised under close supervision by her mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, she inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father's three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held little direct political power. Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments. Victoria married her first cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, their nine children married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the sobriquet "the grandmother of Europe". After Albert's death in 1861, Victoria avoided public appearances.
As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration, her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any of her predecessors and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, political and military change within the United Kingdom, was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire, she was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover. Her son and successor, Edward VII, initiated the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the line of his father. Victoria's father was Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of the reigning King of the United Kingdom, George III; until 1817, Edward's niece, Princess Charlotte of Wales, was the only legitimate grandchild of George III. Her death in 1817 precipitated a succession crisis that brought pressure on the Duke of Kent and his unmarried brothers to marry and have children.
In 1818 he married Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, a widowed German princess with two children—Carl and Feodora —by her first marriage to the Prince of Leiningen. Her brother Leopold was Princess Charlotte's widower; the Duke and Duchess of Kent's only child, was born at 4.15 a.m. on 24 May 1819 at Kensington Palace in London. Victoria was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Charles Manners-Sutton, on 24 June 1819 in the Cupola Room at Kensington Palace, she was baptised Alexandrina after one of her godparents, Emperor Alexander I of Russia, Victoria, after her mother. Additional names proposed by her parents—Georgina and Augusta—were dropped on the instructions of Kent's eldest brother, the Prince Regent. At birth, Victoria was fifth in the line of succession after the four eldest sons of George III: George, the Prince Regent; the Prince Regent had no surviving children, the Duke of York had no children. The Duke of Clarence and the Duke of Kent married on the same day in 1818, but both of Clarence's legitimate daughters died as infants.
The first of these was Princess Charlotte, born and died on 27 March 1819, two months before Victoria was born. Victoria's father died in January 1820. A week her grandfather died and was succeeded by his eldest son as George IV. Victoria was third in line to the throne after York and Clarence. Clarence's second daughter was Princess Elizabeth of Clarence who lived for twelve weeks from 10 December 1820 to 4 March 1821 and, while Elizabeth lived, Victoria was fourth in line; the Duke of York died in 1827. When George IV died in 1830, he was succeeded by his next surviving brother, Clarence, as William IV, Victoria became heir presumptive; the Regency Act 1830 made special provision for Victoria's mother to act as regent in case William died while Victoria was still a minor. King William distrusted the Duchess's capacity to be regent, in 1836 he declared in her presence that he wanted to live until Victoria's 18th birthday, so that a regency could be avoided. Victoria described her childhood as "rather melancholy".
Her mother was protective, Victoria was raised isolated from other children under the so-called "Kensington System", an elaborate set of rules and protocols devised by the Duchess and her ambitious and domineering comptroller, Sir John Conroy, rumoured to be the Duchess's lover. The system prevented the princess from meeting people whom her mother and Conroy deemed undesirable, was designed to render her weak and dependent upon them; the Duchess avoided the court because she was scandalised by the presence of King William's illegitimate children. Victoria shared a bedroom with her mother every night, studied with private tutors to a regular timetable, spent her play-hours with her dolls and her King Charles Spaniel, Dash, her lessons included French, German and Latin, but she spoke only English at home. In 1830, the Duchess of Kent and Conroy took Victoria across the centre of England to visit the Malvern Hills, stopping at towns and great country houses along the way. Similar journeys to oth
Arthur George Morrison was an English writer and journalist known for his realistic novels and stories about working-class life in London's East End, for his detective stories, featuring the detective Martin Hewitt. He collected Japanese art and published several works on the subject, he left a large collection of paintings and other works of art to the British Museum after his death in 1945. Morrison's best known work of fiction is his novel A Child of the Jago. Morrison was born in Poplar, in the East End of London, on 1 November 1863, his father George was an engine fitter at the London Docks. George died in 1871 of tuberculosis. Arthur spent his youth in the East End. In 1879 he began working as an office boy in the Architect's Department of the London School Board, he remembered frequenting used bookstores in Whitechapel Road around this time. In 1880 Arthur's mother took over a shop in Grundy Street. Morrison published his first work, a humorous poem, in the magazine Cycling in 1880, took up cycling and boxing.
He continued to publish works in various cycling journals. In 1885 Morrison published his first serious journalistic work in the newspaper The Globe. In 1886, after having worked his way up to the rank of a third-class clerk, he was appointed to a position at the People's Palace, in Mile End. In 1888 he was given reading privileges at the British Museum. In the same year he published a collection of thirteen sketches entitled Cockney Corner, describing life and conditions in several London districts including Soho and Bow Street. In 1889 he became an editor of the paper Palace Journal, reprinting some of his Cockney Corner sketches, writing commentaries on books and other subjects including the life of London poor people. In 1890 he left this job and joined the editorial staff of The Globe and moved to lodgings in the Strand. In 1891 he published his first book The Shadows Around a collection of supernatural stories. In October 1891 his short story A Street was published in Macmillan's Magazine.
In 1892 he collaborated with illustrator J. A. Sheppard on a collection of animal sketches, one entitled My Neighbors' Dogs, for The Strand Magazine; that year he married Elizabeth Thatcher at Forest Gate. He befriended writer and editor William Ernest Henley around this time, publishing stories of working-class life in Henley's National Observer between 1892-94, his son Guy Morrison was born in 1893. In 1894 Morrison published his first detective story featuring the detective Martin Hewitt. In November he published his short story collection Tales of Mean Streets, dedicating the work to Henley; the collection was reviewed in 1896 in America by Jacob Riis. Morrison said that the work was publicly banned. Reviewers of the collection objected to his story Lizerunt, causing Morrison to write a response in 1895. In 1894 he published Martin Hewitt, Investigator. In 1895 he was invited by writer and clergyman Reverend A. O. M. Jay to visit the Old Nichol Street Rookery. Morrison continued to develop his interest in Japanese art, which he had been introduced to by a friend in 1890.
Morrison began writing his novel A Child of the Jago in early 1896. The novel was published in November by Henley, it described in graphic detail living conditions in the East End, including the permeation of violence into everyday life. Morrison published The Adventures of Martin Hewitt in 1896. A second edition of A Child of the Jago came out in 1897. In 1897 Morrison published seven short stories detailing the exploits of Horace Dorrington. In contrast to Morrison's earlier character Martin Hewitt, who one critic described as "low-key, lower-class answer to Sherlock Holmes," Dorrington was "a respected but corrupt private detective," "a cheerfully unrepentant sociopath, willing to stoop to theft, fraud or cold-blooded murder to make a dishonest penny." These stories were collected into a book titled The Dorrington Deed Box published in 1897. In 1899 Morrison published To London Town as the final instalment of a trilogy including Tales of Mean Streets and A Child of the Jago, his work Cunning Murrell was published in 1900, followed by The Hole in the Wall in 1902.
He continued to publish a wide variety of works throughout the 1900s, including short story collections, one act plays, articles on Japanese art. In 1906 he sold a collection of Japanese woodcuts to the British Museum, he published a play in collaboration with his neighbour, Horace Newte. Morrison wrote successively at Chingford and Loughton. In 1911 he published his authoritative work Japanese Painters, illustrated with paintings from his own collection. A sixth edition of A Child of the Jago came out the same year. In 1913 he retired from journalistic work, his son Guy joined the army in 1914 to serve in World War I. The same year Morrison sold his collection of Japanese art to Sir Watkin Gwynn Evans for £4000. Morrison continued to publish works about art. In 1915 Morrison served as a special constable in Essex, was credited with reporting news of the first Zeppelin raid on London. In 1921 Guy Morrison died of malaria. Morrison was elected as a member of the Royal Society of Literature in 1924.
In 1930 he moved to his last home in Buckinghamshire. In 1933 he published. In 1935 he was elected to the council of the Royal Society of Literature. Morrison died in 1945. In his will he left his collection of paintings, woodcuts, a collection of ceremonial tea porcelain to the British Museum, he directed that his library b
Charles Grant Blairfindie Allen was a Canadian science writer and novelist, a public promoter of Evolution in the second half of the 19th century. Allen was born near Kingston, Canada West, the second son of Catharine Ann Grant and the Rev. Joseph Antisell Allen, a Protestant minister from Dublin, Ireland, his mother was a daughter of the fifth Baron de Longueuil. Allen was educated at home until, at age 13, he and his parents moved to the United States to France, to the United Kingdom, he was educated at King Edward's School in Birmingham and at Merton College in Oxford, both in the United Kingdom. After graduation, Allen studied in France, taught at Brighton College in 1870–71, in his mid-twenties became a professor at Queen's College, a black college in Jamaica. Despite being the son of a minister, Allen became a socialist. After leaving his professorship, in 1876 he returned to England, where he turned his talents to writing, gaining a reputation for his essays on science and for literary works.
A 2007 book by Oliver Sacks cites with approval one of Allen's early articles, "Note-Deafness". Allen's first books dealt with scientific subjects, include Physiological Æsthetics and Flowers and Their Pedigrees, he was first influenced by associationist psychology as expounded by Alexander Bain and by Herbert Spencer, the latter considered the most important individual in the transition from associationist psychology to Darwinian functionalism. In Allen's many articles on flowers and on perception in insects, Darwinian arguments replaced the old Spencerian terms, leading to a radically new vision of plant life that influenced H. G. Wells and helped transform botanical research. On a personal level, a long friendship that started when Allen met Spencer on his return from Jamaica grew uneasy over the years. Allen wrote a critical and revealing biographical article on Spencer, published after Spencer's death. After assisting Sir W. W. Hunter with his Gazetteer of India in the early 1880s, Allen turned his attention to fiction, between 1884 and 1899 produced about 30 novels.
In 1895, his scandalous book titled The Woman Who Did, promulgating certain startling views on marriage and kindred questions, became a bestseller. The book told the story of an independent woman. In his career, Allen wrote two novels under female pseudonyms. One of these, the short novel The Type-writer Girl, he wrote under the name Olive Pratt Rayner. Another work, The Evolution of the Idea of God, propounds a theory of religion on heterodox lines comparable to Herbert Spencer's "ghost theory". Allen's theory became well known and brief references to it appear in a review by Marcel Mauss, Durkheim's nephew, in the articles of William James and in the works of Sigmund Freud; the young G. K. Chesterton wrote on what he considered the flawed premise of the idea, arguing that the idea of God preceded human mythologies, rather than developing from them. Chesterton said of Allen's book on the evolution of the idea of God: "it would be much more interesting if God wrote a book on the evolution of the idea of Grant Allen".
Allen became a pioneer in science fiction, with the novel The British Barbarians. This book, published about the same time as H. G. Wells's The Time Machine described time travel, although the plot is quite different. Allen's short story The Thames Valley Catastrophe describes the destruction of London by a sudden and massive volcanic eruption. Allen married twice and had one son, Jerrard Grant Allen, a theatrical agent/manager who in 1913 married the actress and singer Violet Englefield, they had Reginald "Reggie" Grant Allen. In 1893 Allen left London for the hills around the Devil's Punch Bowl, enthusing on the advantages of the change of scene: "Up here on the free hills, the sharp air blows in upon us, limpid and clear from a thousand leagues of open ocean. Grant Allen died of liver cancer at his home on Hindhead, Surrey, England, on October 25, 1899, he died before finishing Hilda Wade. The novel's final episode, which he dictated to his friend and neighbor Sir Arthur Conan Doyle from his bed, appeared under the appropriate title, "The Episode of the Dead Man Who Spoke" in the Strand Magazine, in 1900.
Many histories of detective fiction mention Allen as an innovator. The illustrious Colonel Clay is a precursor of other gentleman rogue characters; the Scene of the Crime Festival, an annual festival celebrating Canadian mystery fiction, takes place annually on Wolfe Island, near Kingston, Allen's birthplace and honors Allen.. Physiological Æsthetics.. The Colour-Sense: Its Origin and Development. Evolutionist at Large.. Vignettes from Nature.. The Colours of Flowers.. Colin Clout's Calendar.. Flowers and Their Pedigrees.. Philistia. Allen's FIRST NOVEL.. Strange Stories. Short Stories.. Babylon. A novel in 3 volumes.. Charles Darwin.. For Mamie's Sake.. In All Shades.. The Beckoning Hand and Other Stories. Short Stories; this Mortal Coil: A Novel.. Force and Energy.. The Devil's Die.. The White Man's Foot.. Falling in Love.. The Ten