Stephen P. H Butler Leacock, FRSC (30 December 1869 – 28 March 1944) was a Canadian teacher, political scientist, writer, and humourist. In the early part of the 20th century he was the best-known humourist in the English-speaking world. He is known for his light humour along with criticisms of people's follies. The Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour was named in his honour.Stephen Leacock was born in Swanmore, in the county of Hampshire in Southern England. He was the third of eleven children born to (Walter) Peter Leacock (b.1834), who was born and grew up at Oak Hill on the Isle of Wight, an estate that his grandfather had purchased after returning from Madeira where his family had made a fortune out of plantations and Leacock's Madeira wine, founded in 1760. Stephen's mother, Agnes, was born at Soberton, the youngest daughter by his second wife (Caroline Linton Palmer) of the Rev. Stephen Butler, of Bury Lodge, the Butler estate that overlooked the village of Hambledon, New Hampshire. Stephen Butler (for whom Leacock was named), was the maternal grandson of Admiral James Richard Dacres and a brother of Sir Thomas Dacres Butler, Usher of the Black Rod. Leacock's mother, Agnes, was the half-sister of Major Thomas Adair Butler, who won the Victoria Cross during the Indian Mutiny.
Peter's father, Thomas Murdock Leacock J.P., had already fostered plans to eventually send his son out to the colonies, but when he discovered that at age eighteen Peter had married Agnes Butler without his permission, almost immediately he shipped them out to South Africa where he had bought them a farm. The farm in South Africa failed and Stephen's parents returned to Hampshire, where he was born. When Stephen was six, he came out with his family came to Canada, where they settled on a farm near the village of Sutton, Ontario, and the shores of Lake Simcoe. Their farm in the township of Georgina in York County was also unsuccessful, and the family was kept afloat by money sent from Leacock's paternal grandfather. His father became an alcoholic; in the fall of 1878, he travelled west to Manitoba with his brother E.P. Leacock (the subject of Stephen's book My Remarkable Uncle, published in 1942), leaving behind Agnes and the children.
Stephen Leacock, always of obvious intelligence, was sent by his grandfather to the elite private school of Upper Canada College in Toronto, also attended by his older brothers, where he was top of the class and was chosen as head boy. Leacock graduated in 1887, and returned home to find that his father had returned from Manitoba. Soon after, his father left the family again and never returned. There is some disagreement about what happened to Peter Leacock; some suggest that he went to live in Argentina, while other sources indicate that he moved to Nova Scotia and changed his name to Lewis. [mehr][weniger]
Abbie Farwell Brown (August 21, 1871 – March 5, 1927) was an American author.
Brown was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the first of two daughters of Benjamin F. Brown, a descendant of Isaac Allerton, and Clara Neal Brown, who contributed to The Youth's Companion. Her sister Ethel became an author and illustrator under the name Ann Underhill. Her family, for ten generations, had only resided in New England, and Brown herself spent her entire life in her family's Beacon Hill home.
Brown was valedictorian of the Bowdoin School in 1886. She then attended the Girls' Latin School, where she was friends with Josephine Preston Peabody. She was the driving force behind the newly created school newspaper, The Jabberwock, named by Brown after the poem by Lewis Carroll. They wrote to Carroll for permission to use the name and Carroll wrote back, wishing them "all success to the forthcoming magazine". The school, now Boston Latin Academy, still publishes The Jabberwock. After graduating in 1891, she attended Radcliffe College, graduating in 1894.
While at Girls' Latin School, she was contributing pieces to St. Nicholas Magazine, some illustrated by her sister. Starting in 1898, under the pen name Jean Neal she wrote articles for the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. She also wrote a one-act comedy called Quits (1896) set at a women's college.
The miracles of Saint Werburgh, including her resurrection of a goose, from the Chester Cathedral
Her first children's book, The Book of Saints and Friendly Beasts (1900) was inspired by her first trip abroad, specifically by the carved choir stalls in Chester Cathedral depicting the life of Saint Werburgh. The book retells Christian stories of the animal encounters of various saints. Brown would write other collections retelling old tales for a contemporary child audience. Her In the Days of Giants (1902) featured stories from Norse mythology and remained a standard text in libraries for several generations. Tales of the Red Children (1909), co-written with James MacIntosh Bell, featured Canadian Indian folklore.
Original stories by Brown include The Lonesomest Doll (1901), The Flower Princess (1904), John of the Woods (1909), and The Lucky Stone (1914). She wrote several volumes of children's poetry, including A Pocketful of Posies (1901) and Fresh Posies (1908). Her books of adult poetry, including Heart of New England (1920) and The Silver Stair (1926), were less successful.
Brown wrote song lyrics for the Progressive Music Series by Silver, Burdett and Co. She and composer Mabel Wheeler Daniels wrote the song "On the Trail", which became the official song of the Girl Scouts of the USA. Daniels set Brown's war poem "Peace with a Sword" to music and it was performed by the Handel and Haydn Society in 1917. Brown's only juvenile biography was of a composer, The Boyhood of Edward MacDowell (1924).
Brown was active in New England literary life. She edited the 20-volume Youn [mehr][weniger]