Dedications
in
THE WORKS OF JEFFERY FARNOL

by Pat Bryan

 

Like most authors, Jeffery Farnol dedicated his published books to various members of his family and his circle of friends. The dedications, and the times and manner in which they occur, provide an interesting sidelight to JF's life. His brother Edward, for example, with whom he quarreled in the 1920's, is conspicuous by his absence, although many other family members are honoured. The list which follows is, as far as I know, complete, and has been compiled with the valuable assistance of fellow members of the Jeffery Farnol Appreciation Society. The dedications are presented, as far as possible, in the exact format used in each book, with their different type sizes [ it wasn't possible to maintain these exactly in this hypertext representation. Pat's original Word file available here. I.E-N ] and any eccentricities of spelling that JF may have used. Where I have the information, I've added an explanatory note or two. I hope to flesh out some of the names as my research proceeds.

Pat Bryan January, 2003

 

 

 

1910 - THE BROAD HIGHWAY

To

SHIRLEY BYRON JEVONS

THE FRIEND OF MY BOYISH AMBITIONS

THIS WORK IS DEDICATED

AS A MARK OF MY GRATITUDE, AFFECTION

AND ESTEEM

LONDON, Oct. 8, 1910 J.F.

 

Shirley Byron Jevons was an old family friend, and, in 1910, Editor of "The Sportsman" magazine. JF had sent the manuscript of The Broad Highway to his mother in England, and she in turn passed it on to Jevons, who was instrumental in bringing it to the attention of Sampson Low, Marston & Co, the publishers.

 

1911 - THE MONEY MOON

To

"JENNIFER"

The One and Only

Whose unswerving Faith was an Inspiration

Whose Generosity is a bye-word;

this book is dedicated

as a mark of

GRATITUDE and AFFECTION

Jeffery Farnol Feb. 10, 1910

 

"Jennifer" was JF’s mother-in-law, Jennifer Hawley. According to her grandson, Hughson Hawley III, it was she who persuaded him not to "give up" on his attempts to get The Broad Highway published, nor to let it go for a mere $500, but to send it over to England.

1913 - THE AMATEUR GENTLEMAN

To

MY FATHER

WHO HAS

EVER CHOSEN "THE HARDER WAY" WHICH IS

A PATH THAT CAN BE TRODDEN ONLY

BY THE FOOT OF

A MAN

Although JF had his differences with his father as a young man, they had obviously been resolved by the publication of this, my own personal favourite among all Farnol’s books Henry Farnol had come to accept that, yes, his son could indeed write, and make a very handsome living doing so..

 

1913 - THE HONOURABLE MR TAWNISH

To

DOROTHY;

The best and gentlest of sisters,

The truest and bravest of comrades,

I dedicate this book.

Jeffery Farnol

London 28th August, 1913

Dorothy Farnol, JF’s only sister, was born in 1888 and lived to the age of 96. She married Ronald Oakeshott (in 1915?); many years later, after her husband died, she became even closer to her brother Jack. Her sons Ewart and Lawrence were often at his house. Surpisingly, Edward Farnol, in his reminiscences, makes no mention of her existence.

 

1915 - THE CHRONICLES OF THE IMP No dedication

 

1915 - BELTANE THE SMITH

To

FREDERICK HUGHSON HAWLEY

TO WHOM BELTANE IS NO STRANGER

I DEDICATE THIS ROMANCE

JEFFERY FARNOL

LONDON, August 1915

Frederick Hughson Hawley, the acclaimed American architectural illustrator, was JF’s father-in-law; while staying in his home in Englewood, New Jersey, Farnol would often write all night, and would share with Hawley some of his stories.

1917 - THE DEFINITE OBJECT

TO MY

WIFE

This, of course, was JF’s first wife, Blanche Victoria Wilhemina Hawley, whom he married in June 1903 - a short three months before the birth if their child.

 

1918 - OUR ADMIRABLE BETTY

TO

MY MOTHER

JF’s mother, Kate (Jeffery) Farnol, who died in 1921, was always supportive of her oldest son’s ambitions.

 

1918 - SOME WAR IMPRESSIONS

TO

ALL MY

AMERICAN FRIENDS

In his foreword to this book of previously published articles, Farnol pre-shadows the call for the cooperation of the "two English-speaking peoples" that Winston Churchill would make some twenty-five years later.

 

 

1919 - THE GESTE OF DUKE JOCELYN

My GILLIAN, thou child that budding woman art

For whom to-day and yesterday lie far apart

Already thou, my dear, dost longer dresses wear

And bobbest in most strange, new-fangled ways thy

hair;

Thou lookest on the world with eyes grown serious

And rul’st thy father with a sway imperious

Particularly as regards his socks and ties

Insistent that each with the other harmonise.

Instead of simple fairy-tales that pleased of yore

Romantic verse thou read’st and novels by the score

And very oft I"ve known thee sigh and call them

"stuff"

Vowing of love romantic they’ve not half enough.

Wherefore, like fond and doting parent, I

Will strive this want romantic to supply.

I’ll write for thee a book of sighing lover

Crammed with ROMANCE from cover unto cover;

A book the like of which were hard to find

Filled with ROMANCE of every sort and kind.

I’ll write it as the Gestours wrote of old,

In prose, blank-verse, and rhyme it shall be told.

And GILLIAN --

Some day perhaps, my dear, when you are grown

A portly dame with children of your own

You’ll gather all your troop about your knee

And read to them this Geste I made for thee.

Gillian was Farnol’s only child from his first marriage, born in 1903. At the time of publication of The Geste of Duke Jocelyn, she would have been 16. She died in 1978

 

1920 - BLACK BARTLEMY’S TREASURE

TO MY NEPHEWS

JAMES JEFFERY FARNOL

AND

RONALD EWART OAKESHOTT

James Jeffery Farnol was Edward Farnol’s son; he entered the Royal Navy, eventually attaining the rank of Captain. Ronald Ewart Oakeshott was Dorothy Farnol’s son, named in memory of his dead uncle. He went on to become perhaps the foremost writer on medieval weaponry, and was known sometimes as the ‘Dean of Swords’. He was born in 1916, so would have been only four when Bartlemy was published. He has stated that he inherited his interest in swords from his uncle. He died in 2002.

 

1921 - MARTIN CONISBY’S VENGEANCE

TO MY DEAR AUNTS

MRS. MARRIOTT

AND

MISS JEFFERY

(AUNTIE "KIZ")

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

Anna Maria Marriott was Kate Farnol’s older sister; her son, Jack, was said to be the model for the character of Beltane. He was killed in France in 1917. Keziah Jeffery, another of Kate’s sisters, lived in King’s Heath near Birmingham with her mother, and JF lived with them for six months during his brief career at the iron foundry.

 

 

 

 

1922 - PEREGRINE’S PROGRESS

HE who hath Imagination is blessed

or cursed with a fearful magic whereby

he may scale the heights of Heaven or

plumb the depths of Hell

 

This, although it sounds like a quotation from the classics, was presumably written by JF; I can find no reference for it in either Bartlett or the Oxford.

 

1923 - SIR JOHN DERING

TO

MY FRIEND OF YEARS

AND RIGHT TRUSTY COMRADE

HERBERT LONDON POPE

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK AS A SMALL TRIBUTE

TO HIS PATIENCE, FAITHFULNESS AND UN-

FALTERING LOYALTY; WITH THE EARNEST HOPE

THAT TIME MAY BUT KNIT US EVER MORE CLOSE.

SUSSEX JEFFERY FARNOL

Bertie Pope was JF’s secretary for a number of years. Sadly, he died shortly after this dedication

 

 

1925 - THE LORING MYSTERY No dedication

 

 

1926 - THE HIGH ADVENTURE

TO

"Bill"

JOHN WILLIAM STURT MILNES

his affectionate father-in-law

dedicates this book

as a work of

Friendship

Love

and

Esteem

in the sure hope that coming years

may draw

each to each

ever the nearer.

SUNNYSIDE, 1925

Bill Milnes and Gillian Farnol were married in 1921, and divorced in 1936.

1927 - THE QUEST OF YOUTH

TO

"PHIL"

IN GRATEFUL AFFECTION

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

This may be a reference to the woman who was to become Farnol’s second wife, Phyllis Clarke, although ‘Phil’ is usually short for ‘Philip’ rather than ‘Phyllis’. She was certainly very much a part of his life at this time.

 

1928 - EPICS OF THE FANCY

There is a long ANTESCRIPTUM to this book which acknowledges the help of several people; chief among them is E.V Chandler, who is also mentioned in the report on the Carpentier-Dempsey fight. (See next dedication)

 

1928 - GYFFORD OF WEARE

TO

ERNEST V. CHANDLER

MY TRUSTY FRIEND

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

Jeffery Farnol June, Sunnyside: 1928

Ernest Vivian Chandler, born 1891, was a former Amateur Middleweight (later Heavyweight) boxing champion in England and the U.S., and served in the Royal Field Artillery in the later stages of the War. He became JF’s secretary and literary agent. Although he was disliked and mistrusted by members of Farnol’s family, he and Farnol remained good friends until his death in 1936.

 

1929 - THE SHADOW AND OTHER STORIES No dedication

 

1929 - ANOTHER DAY No dedication

 

1930 - OVER THE HILLS

TO

WALTER

BENYON-TYNKER

WHO WAS HECTOR MACFARLANE’S

FIRST FRIEND

I DEDICATE THIS NARRATIVE OF

HIS GRIEFS AND TRIUMPHS

JEFFERY FARNOL

‘"Budge" - wife of Walter Benyon-Tinker’ is buried in the same grave in Patcham churchyard as Blanche Farnol, her sister Nydia, and their parents, Hughson and Jennie Hawley. She died in 1924. Hughson Hawley III, Farnol and Blanche’s nephew in the U.S. believes that she was Nydia Hawley Watson’s daughter, usually known as ‘Tuddy’ to the family. This would make W.B-T Farnol’s nephew by marriage.

 

 

1931 - THE JADE OF DESTINY

TO

BLANCHE

MY LOYAL COMPANION

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

This was the second book dedicated by JF to his first wife, Blanche. They would be divorced a little more than five years later.

 

1932 - VOICES FROM THE DUST

TO

MY OLD FRIEND

HARRY PRESTON

THIS BOOK IS DEDICATED

WITH

AFFECTIONATE REGARDS

SUSSEX, 1932 JEFFERY FARNOL

Sir Harry Preston was the owner of several hotels in Brighton, including the "Albion" opposite the pier, which was frequented by many of the leading stage and sporting stars of the time. He was a boxing promoter, and accompanied JF to the Dempsey/Carpentier fight in the U.S. Robert Ellenwood, in his "Farnol-Ellenwood Connection" on this website, mentions having received several JF books from Sir Harry.

 

1932 - CHARMIAN, LADY VIBART

TO

CHARMIAN JANE

AND

SUCH AS DO LOVE HER

Jeffery Farnol Sunnyside

JUNE, 1932

Charmian Jane Farnol, whom JF adopted when he married his second wife, Phyllis, was born about this time.

 

1933 - THE WAY BEYOND

TO

JOSEPH DAVID HUGHES

MY GOOD AND VERY DEAR FRIEND

I DEDICATE THIS BOOK

IN

ABIDING AFFECTION

1934 - WINDS OF CHANCE (FORTUNE)

TO

CAPTAIN FRANK SHAW

I DEDICATE

THIS ROMANCE OF PERILOUS SEAS

in Truest Affection

and

messmate ahoy!

When the Sun is over the foreyard

forget not thy friend

JEFFERY FARNOL

Brighton, 1933

 

Frank Hubert Shaw (1878-1960) was a popular writer of adventure stories, nearly all of them about the sea. Sampson Low, Marston published a number of his books, and Farnol may have made his acquaintance through them, or through Alec Watt, their literary agent.

 

1935 - JOHN ‘O THE GREEN

TO

NYDIA, THAT IS NAN,

WHOSE OTHER NAME IS

SYMPATHY

THIS ROMANCE IS HUMBLY DEDICATED

BRIGHTON, SUSSEX

February 10th, 1935

Nydia - called Nan by the family - was the younger sister of JF’s wife Blanche. In 1935 she came to Sunnyside to join her parents, F. Hughson and Jennifer Hawley, who were living with JF and his wife. One might imagine that, with a houseful of in-laws, he needed all the sympathy he could get. However, this dedication most likely refers to the tensions that must have existed in the household leading up to JF and Blanche’s divorce in 1936. She died in 1951, and is buried in the family grave at Patcham.

 

1936 - A PAGEANT OF VICTORY No dedication

 

1937 - A BOOK FOR JANE

Dedicatory

And so, Jane, while your years are few

This book I dedicate to you

That, when this busy pen of mine

Shall, dear, have written its last line

And you will be a woman grown

Perhaps with children of your own,

You’ll draw them round about your knee

And read this book of you and me;

And reading it, perhaps, you’ll know

How much I loved you years ago.

Charmian Jane was JF’s daughter of his second marriage. At the time this book was written, she was "growed five and a bit". Jane is now married to Brian Curtis and lives in New South Wales, Australia.

 

1937 - THE CROOKED FURROW

To

RONALD OAKESHOTT

A BROTHER OF THE PEN AND OF CHOICE

THIS ROMANCE IS AFFECTIONATELY DEDICATED

BY JACK

JEFFERY FARNOL

SUSSEX, 1937

Ronald Oakeshott was the husband of JF’s sister Dorothy, and had helped his brother-in-law to pack up all his belongings and move them from Brighton to his new home in Eastbourne. The ‘brother of the pen’ reference is to Oakeshott’s authorship of his book "A Merchant at Arms".

 

1938 - THE LONELY ROAD No dedication

 

1939 - THE HAPPY HARVEST

TO

MY WIFE

PHYLLIS MARY

JF had married Phyllis Clarke after his divorce from Blanche became final in 1938. She has said that she first met him "when she was 16", and she had moved to Hove to be near him when he bought his estate outside Brighton; their daughter Jane, was born there. After he and his wife separated in 1936, they set up house in Eastbourne. She died on July 8, 1997.

1939 - A NEW BOOK FOR JANE

 

1940 - A MATTER OF BUSINESS No dedication

 

1940 - ADAM PENFEATHER, BUCCANEER No dedication

 

1942 - MURDER BY NAIL No dedication

1943 - THE KING LIVETH

....to all sons and daughters of England,

who, blessed with this ageless spirit

are now fighting, working, striving or suffering

for the future welfare of all,

this Romance is humbly dedicated.....

In a combined Foreword and Dedication, JF likens the first years of the Second World War to the year 878 and the time of King Alfred and his fight against the Danes and "then (as now)....the mire of a brutish Paganism".

 

1945 - THE ‘PIPING TIMES’

TO

DUDLEY SEYMOUR-NICHOLS

‘Our Smiling Philosopher’

THIS ROMANCE

IS

DEDICATED

Dudley Seymour-Nichols was a ‘great friend’ of JF’s. He owned an antique store in the Croydon area, and formed a friendship with Farnol over their love of antique weaponry. He had only one hand, and, like JF, was short and stocky and a great raconteur. He and his wife were frequent

visitors to the Eastbourne house.

 

1946 - HERITAGE PERILOUS

TO

ARTHUR CATLING

(The Unconquered)

Whose brave, glad spirit is an inspiration

more especially to his friend

Eastbourne JEFFERY FARNOL

1946

Arthur Catling was a retired Scotland Yard detective whose name appears as witness on

several of JF’s legal documents. The Farnols entertained a number of Metropolitan police superintendents to lunch on several occasions, and Catling, although not of the same rank,

was one of the group. He was severely disabled from a crash when testing a ‘plane during the war, but returned to work with the police. He was uncomplaining, hence JF’s reference to him as "The Unconquered"

 

1948 - MY LORD OF WRYBOURNE

TO

SERGEANT RONALD HILL

"RON"

a Soldier of the Great War

who

having been ever faithful to his duty

in those perilous years

is now

as faithful to his grateful

JEFFERY FARNOL

Ron Hill was an Australian soldier, who had been a prisoner of war. Before being repatriated to Australia, he spent a period of time at a former Naval training camp in a converted school adjacent to the Farnol property in Eastbourne, and they became friends. After his return, he would send food parcels to the Farnols in still-rationed Britain.

1949 - THE FOOL BELOVED

TO

the sacred memory of my brother

EWART

who was killed in action

Aged 19

at Vrieskraal, Africa,

1901

It is interesting that JF, himself nearing the end of his life, should have dedicated this book to his younger brother, who had died all those years ago in the last of the "gallant" wars.

 

1950 - THE NINTH EARL

TO

THE BEST AND TRUEST

OF FRIENDS

DAVID AND ANNE

David Baird Murray was a director of Sampson Low, Marston, and he and JF had been friends for many years. Here, again, JF is remembering someone who had already passed on - Murray died in 1944.

 

1951 - THE GLAD SUMMER

Dedicated To

My daughter, CHARMIAN JANE

the devoted typist

and

Sternest Critic

of

her humble, highly respectful

sire:

JEFFERY FARNOL

Jane Farnol, now living in New South Wales, is Farnol’s daughter by his second wife, Phyllis, and is the owner of many of Farnol’s copyrights and of a great deal of his early papers and unpublished work, as well as a great deal of memorabilia

 

1952 - WAIF OF THE RIVER

TO

HERBERT TAYLOR

The oft-proven friend

of

his grateful

JEFFERY FARNOL

Herbert Taylor, Jane Farnol remembers, was "very rich", and would visit them in a ‘vast’ black Austin ‘Princess’ limousine. He had some type of manufacturing business that had been "enormously profitable".

 

1955 - JUSTICE BY MIDNIGHT No dedication

 


 









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