Edward Frederic Benson (24 July 1867 – 29 February 1940) was an English novelist, biographer, memoirist, archaeologist and short story writer.
E. F. Benson
|Born||Edward Frederic Benson|
24 July 1867
Wellington College, Berkshire
|Died||29 February 1940 (aged 72)|
University College Hospital, London
|Relatives||Edward White Benson (father)|
Robert Hugh Benson (brother)
A. C. Benson (brother)
E. F. Benson was born at Wellington College in Berkshire, the fifth child of the headmaster, Edward White Benson (later Chancellor of Lincoln Cathedral, Bishop of Truro and Archbishop of Canterbury), and his wife born Mary Sidgwick ("Minnie").
E. F. Benson was the younger brother of Arthur Christopher Benson, who wrote the words to "Land of Hope and Glory", Robert Hugh Benson, author of several novels and Roman Catholic apologetic works, and Margaret Benson (Maggie), an author and amateur Egyptologist. Two other siblings died young. Benson's parents had six children and no grandchildren.
Benson was educated at Temple Grove School, then at Marlborough College, where he wrote some of his earliest works and upon which he based his novel David Blaize. He continued his education at King's College, Cambridge. At Cambridge, he was a member of the Pitt Club, and later in life he became an honorary fellow of Magdalene College.
Benson's first book published was Sketches From Marlborough. He started his novel writing career with the (then) fashionably controversial Dodo (1893), which was an instant success, and followed it with a variety of satire and romantic and supernatural melodrama. He repeated the success of Dodo, which featured a scathing description of composer and militant suffragette Ethel Smyth (which she "gleefully acknowledged", according to actress Prunella Scales), with the same cast of characters a generation later: Dodo the Second (1914), "a unique chronicle of the pre-1914 Bright Young Things" and Dodo Wonders (1921), "a first-hand social history of the Great War in Mayfair and the Shires". The Mapp and Lucia series, written relatively late in his career, consists of six novels and two short stories. The novels are: Queen Lucia, Lucia in London, Miss Mapp, Mapp and Lucia, Lucia's Progress (published as The Worshipful Lucia in the United States) and Trouble for Lucia. The short stories are "The Male Impersonator" and "Desirable Residences". Both appear in anthologies of Benson's short stories, and the former is also often appended to the end of the novel Miss Mapp.
The last three novels were produced as a television series by London Weekend Television for the recently initiated Channel 4 during 1985–6 with the series title Mapp and Lucia and featuring Nigel Hawthorne, Geraldine McEwan and Prunella Scales; the first four have been adapted for BBC Radio 4 by both Aubrey Woods and (most recently) Ned Sherrin; the fifth, Lucia's Progress, was adapted for BBC Radio 4 during 2008 by John Peacock. During 2007, the television series was rerun by the British digital channel ITV3. A new 3-part adaptation written by Steve Pemberton was broadcast during three nights on BBC One; 29th, 30th, and 31 December 2014.
Benson was also known as a writer of atmospheric and at times humorous or satirical ghost stories, which were often first published in story magazines such as Pearson's Magazine or Hutchinson's Magazine, 20 of which were illustrated by Edmund Blampied. These "spook stories", as they were also termed, were then reprinted in collections by his principal publisher, Walter Hutchinson. His 1906 short story, "The Bus-Conductor", a fatal-crash premonition tale about a person haunted by a hearse driver, has been adapted several times, notably during 1944 (for the movie Dead of Night and as an anecdote in Bennett Cerf's Ghost Stories anthology published the same year) and for a 1961 episode of The Twilight Zone. The catchphrase from the story, "Room for one more", created a legend, and also occurs in the 1986 Oingo Boingo song, "Dead Man's Party".
Benson's story David Blaize and the Blue Door (1918) is a children's fantasy influenced by the work of Lewis Carroll. "Mr Tilly's Seance" is a witty and amusing story about a man flattened by a traction-engine who finds himself dead and conscious on the 'other side'. Other notable stories are the eerie "The Room in the Tower" and "Pirates".
Benson is also known for a series of biographies/autobiographies and memoirs, including one of Charlotte Brontë. His last book, delivered to his publisher ten days before his death, was an autobiography entitled Final Edition.
Further "Mapp and Lucia" books have been written by Tom Holt, Guy Fraser-Sampson, and Ian Shepherd.
The principal setting of four of the Mapp and Lucia books is a town named Tilling, which is recognizably based on Rye, East Sussex, where Benson lived for many years and served as mayor from 1934 (he relocated there during 1918). Benson's home, Lamb House, served as the model for Mallards, Mapp's—- and ultimately Lucia's—- home in some of the Tilling series. There really was a handsome "Garden Room" adjoining the street but it was destroyed by a bomb during the Second World War. Lamb House attracted writers: it was earlier the home of Henry James, and later of Rumer Godden.
He donated a church window of the main parish church in Rye, St Mary's, in memory of his brother, as well as providing a gift of a viewing platform overlooking the Town Salts.
E. F. Benson is presumed to have been homosexual, but was intensely discreet. At Cambridge he fell in love with several fellow students, including Vincent Yorke, father of the novelist Henry Yorke, confiding to his diary "I feel perfectly mad about him just now...Ah, if only he knew, and yet I think he does." In later life Benson sustained friendships with wide circle of gay men, and shared a villa at Capri with John Ellingham Brooks. (Prior to the First World War the island was popular with wealthy homosexuals). Homoeroticism and a general homosexual sensibility suffuses his literary works, such as David Blaize (1916), while his most popular works are famed for their wry and dry camp humour and social observations.
Benson was a good athlete, and represented England at figure skating. He was a precocious and prolific writer, publishing his first book while still a student. Nowadays he is known principally for his Mapp and Lucia series about Emmeline "Lucia" Lucas and Elizabeth Mapp.
In London, Benson also lived at 395 Oxford Street, W1 (now the branch of Russell & Bromley just west of Bond Street Underground Station), 102 Oakley Street, SW3, and 25 Brompton Square, SW3, where much of the action of Lucia in London occurs and where English Heritage placed a Blue Plaque during 1994.
Also known as the Make Way For Lucia series
Ash-Tree Press is a Canadian company that publishes supernatural and horror literature.
The press has reprinted notable collections of ghostly stories by such writers as R. H. Malden, A. N. L. Munby, L. T. C. Rolt, Margery Lawrence, and Eleanor Scott. It also has published newly edited collections of supernatural tales by such writers as John Metcalfe, Marjorie Bowen, Vernon Lee, and Frederick Cowles, and it has produced multi-volume sets of the complete supernatural short stories of Sheridan Le Fanu, E. F. Benson, H. Russell Wakefield, Russell Kirk, and A. M. Burrage. In 2001, the press published a collected edition of M. R. James's ghost stories and related writings.
In addition, Ash-Tree Press has published new collections of stories by contemporary authors and a series of original anthologies. Awards for these include the 2002 British Fantasy Award for best collection for After Shocks by Paul Finch and the 2004 International Horror Guild Award and 2005 World Fantasy Award for the anthology Acquainted with the Night, edited by Christopher and Barbara Roden.Ash-Tree Press itself has received the 1997 Special Award, Non-Professional, from the World Fantasy Awards and the 1999 Specialty Press Award of the Horror Writers Association.Christopher and Barbara Roden are the proprietors of both Ash-Tree Press and Calabash Press; the latter publishes fiction and nonfiction related to Sherlock Holmes.David Blaize
David Blaize is a novel of school life by English author Edward Frederic Benson. The first edition was published in 1916 by Hodder and Stoughton, London.
Set in England before World War I, the novel describes David's years at prep school and public school, his studies, sports and friendships, and finally, his brush with death when he stops a runaway horse.David of King's
David of King's is a novel by Edward Frederic Benson. The first edition was published in 1924. It was published by London, New York [etc.] : Hodder and Stoughton.
David of King's (published in the USA as David Blaize of King's) is Benson's enjoyable sequel to his earlier novel David Blaize. The book deals with the story of David's Blaize's three years as an undergraduate at King's College, Cambridge.Dead Man's Party (song)
"Dead Man's Party" is a song by American band Oingo Boingo, released as the third single from their album of the same name.
The song was released on a 12" single in conjunction with another song from the album, "Stay," with the cover art touting it as the single's a-side, while the catalog number and some discographies consider it the single's b-side. An edited version of "Dead Man's Party" was featured in a promotional music video and was issued in 1986 as the b-side of the 7" single "Just Another Day," also culled from the Dead Man's Party album.The lyric, "I hear the chauffeur coming to my door/Says there's room for maybe just one more," is a reference to "The Bus-Conductor," a short story by E. F. Benson about a hearse driver, first published in The Pall Mall Magazine in 1906. The story has been adapted several times and spawned an urban legend, with each version using the catchphrase, "Room for one more."
The song has made many appearances in popular culture. It is perhaps best known for its appearance in the 1986 film Back to School, where the band performs it at a party. It was also featured in the series Chuck in the episode "Chuck Versus the Couch Lock," during John Casey's fake funeral, as well as the Malcolm in the Middle episode "Halloween", in season 2 of Supergirl (TV series) and in a promo for season 5 of the series Bones. It is also referenced in the novel Ready Player One.
Danny Elfman performed the song as the final encore of his Nightmare Before Christmas concerts at the Hollywood Bowl in 2015 and 2016, alongside his former Oingo Boingo guitarist and arranger Steve Bartek.Dead of Night
Dead of Night is a 1945 British anthology horror film, made by Ealing Studios. The individual segments were directed by Alberto Cavalcanti, Charles Crichton, Basil Dearden and Robert Hamer. It stars Mervyn Johns, Googie Withers, Sally Ann Howes and Michael Redgrave. The film is most remembered for the concluding story, which features Redgrave and concerns a ventriloquist's malevolent dummy.
Dead of Night stands out from British films of the 1940s, when few horror films were being produced there (horror films had been banned from production in Britain during the war). It had an influence on subsequent British films in the genre. Both of John Baines' stories were recycled for later films and the possessed ventriloquist dummy episode was adapted into the pilot episode of the long-running CBS radio series Escape.Ghost Story Society
The Ghost Story Society was a not-for-profit literary society whose members shared an interest in supernatural fiction. Founded in Britain in 1988 by Rosemary Pardoe, Jeffrey Dempsey, David Cowperthwaite and Mark Valentine, it had an international membership and was later administered by joint organizers Christopher Roden and Barbara Roden, owners of Ash-Tree Press, with the assistance of David G. Rowlands, Richard Dalby, Jan Arter, and Roger Dobson. It has not been active since 2007.
The society produced the journal All Hallows, which featured new ghostly fiction, along with studies of the works and lives of such authors of classic ghost stories as M. R. James, J. Sheridan Le Fanu, Algernon Blackwood, H. Russell Wakefield, E. F. Benson, A. N. L. Munby, and R. R. Ryan, as well as more recent authors such as Robert Aickman, Elizabeth Jane Howard, Terry Lamsley, and Jonathan Aycliffe. It also included detailed reviews and notices of recent ghostly publications and films, letters from members, and a column by Ramsey Campbell. All Hallows received the 2003 International Horror Guild Award for best periodical.Hutchinson (publisher)
Hutchinson began as Hutchinson & Co. (Publishers) Ltd., an English book publisher, founded in London in 1887 by Sir George Hutchinson and later run by his son, Walter Hutchinson (1887–1950). Hutchinson's published books and magazines such as The Lady's Realm, Adventure-story Magazine, Hutchinson's Magazine and Woman.In the 1920s, Walter Hutchinson published many of the "spook stories" of E.F. Benson in Hutchinson's Magazine and then in collections in a number of books. The company also first published Arthur Conan Doyle's Professor Challenger novels, five novels by mystery writer Harry Stephen Keeler, and short stories by Eden Phillpotts. In 1929, Walter Hutchinson stopped publishing magazines to concentrate on books. In the 1930s, Hutchinson published H.G. Wells's The Bulpington of Blup as well as the first English translations of Vladimir Nabokov's Camera Obscura (translated by Winifred Roy with Nabokov credited as Vladimir Nabokoff-Sirin) in 1936 and Despair (translated by Nabokov himself) under its John Long marque of paperbacks.In 1947 the company launched the Hutchinson University Library book series.
Among notable, non-fiction books, in 1959 Hutchinson & Co. published the first English edition of Karl Popper's most famous work, The Logic of Scientific Discovery, first published as Logik der Forschung in 1934.
The company merged with Century Publishing in 1985 to form Century Hutchinson, and was folded into the British Random House Group in 1989, where it became an imprint of Cornerstone Publishing, a publishing house of Penguin Random House UK, which is turn a division of Penguin Random House, which itself, since 2013, is owned jointly by Bertelsmann and Pearson plc.Lamb House
Lamb House is an 18th-century house situated in Rye, East Sussex, England, and in the ownership of the National Trust.
The house is run as a writer's house museum. It was the home of Henry James from 1897 to 1914, and later of E.F. Benson.Lucinda Gane
Lucinda Gane (20 October 1949 – 6 October 2005) was a British actress, known for her role as the absent-minded science teacher Miss Terri Mooney in the children's television serial Grange Hill; a role she played from 1980–1983. In 1985–1986 she played Georgie Pillson's trusty housemaid Foljambe in two series of Mapp and Lucia, adapted by London Weekend Television from the novels of E. F. Benson. She also appeared in Thomas and Sarah, a spin-off from Upstairs, Downstairs, playing Emily Rudge.
She married David Cann in 1972, before divorcing him and remarried the poet Christopher Reid. After Gane's death from brain cancer in 2005, Reid began writing a collection of poems in tribute to his late wife. Titled A Scattering, this volume won the £30,000 Costa Book Award in 2010.Mapp and Lucia
Mapp and Lucia is a collective name for a series of novels by E. F. Benson, and also the name for two British television adaptations based on those novels.Mapp and Lucia (1985 TV series)
Mapp and Lucia is a British television series, set in the fictional Sussex coastal town of Tilling-on-Sea and based on three 1930s novels by E. F. Benson. It was produced by London Weekend Television, filmed in Rye (on which Benson based Tilling) and neighbouring Winchelsea in the 1980s, and starred Prunella Scales as Mapp, Geraldine McEwan as Lucia, Nigel Hawthorne as Georgie, and Denis Lill as Major Benjy. The script was by Gerald Savory. There were ten episodes, (which aired in two series of five) broadcast on Channel 4 in 1985 and 1986. These have been repeated over the years, most recently on ITV Encore in 2015, shortly after the broadcast of the new BBC adaptation Mapp and Lucia and the death of Geraldine McEwan.Marion Mathie
Marion Mathie (6 February 1925 – 20 January 2012) was an English actress who appeared in the last four series of Rumpole of the Bailey as his fearsome wife, Hilda ("She Who Must Be Obeyed"); and many other roles in other productions, including Mrs Susan Wyse in the London Weekend Television adaptation of the Mapp and Lucia books by E. F. Benson.Mary Benson (hostess)
Mary Benson (née Sidgwick; 1841–1918) was an English hostess of the Victorian era. She was the wife of Revd. Edward Benson, who during their marriage became Archbishop of Canterbury. Their children included several prolific authors and contributors to cultural life. During her marriage, she was involved with Lucy Tait (11 February 1856 – 5 December 1938), daughter of the previous Archbishop of Canterbury. She was described by Gladstone, the British Prime Minister, as the 'cleverest woman in Europe'.Riseholme (disambiguation)
Riseholme is a village in Lincolnshire, England.
Riseholme may also refer to:
Riseholme (fictional village), a fictional village in the "Mapp and Lucia" novels of E F Benson
Riseholme College, Riseholme, Lincolnshire, EnglandSchool and university in literature
Educational settings as place and/or subject in fiction form the theme of this catalogue of titles and authors. Organized alphabetically by the author's last name, the information is further divided by general school environments and those where the university, specifically, is the primary focal point. The list spans centuries and geographical boundaries, featuring Charlotte Brontë, Agatha Christie and Honore de Balzac as well as contemporary writers Curtis Sittenfeld, Joyce Carol Oates, and Donna Tartt. For those interested in learning more about the school/university in literature, references are included that provide a more academic study of the subgenre.The Room in the Tower
"The Room in the Tower" is a short horror story by E.F. Benson, published in 1912.Tilling (Sussex)
Tilling is a fictional coastal town, based on Rye, East Sussex, in the Mapp and Lucia novels of Edward Frederic Benson (1867–1940).Twenty Two (The Twilight Zone)
"Twenty Two" is episode 53 of the American television series The Twilight Zone. The story was adapted by Rod Serling from a short anecdote in the 1944 Bennett Cerf Random House anthology Famous Ghost Stories, which itself was an adaptation of "The Bus-Conductor," a short story by E. F. Benson published in The Pall Mall Magazine in 1906.Vincent Yorke
Vincent Wodehouse Yorke (21 May 1869 — 27 November 1957) was an English cricketer who played for Gloucestershire. He was born in Pimlico and died in Paddington.
Yorke was the son of John Reginald Yorke and Sophia Matilda de Tuyll de Serooskerken. He was a wealthy landowner and industrialist in Birmingham. He married Hon. Maud Evelyn Wyndham, daughter of the second Baron Leconfield.He attended University of Cambridge, where E. F. Benson was a fellow student who fell in love with him. Benson wrote in his diary: "I feel perfectly mad about him just now...Ah, if only he knew, and yet I think he does."Yorke made a single first-class appearance for the Gloucestershire team, during the 1898 season, against Lancashire. Batting in the middle of the order, Yorke scored 10 runs in the only innings in which he batted.Yorke's first son was Henry Vincent Yorke, an English author under the name Henry Green, best remembered for the novels Party Going, Living and Loving. Yorke's second son, Gerald, made a single first-class appearance for the Gloucestershire team in 1925.