Arthur Machen

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Arthur Machen (pronounced /ˈmækən/) (3 March 1863 – 15 December 1947) was a Welsh author and mystic of the 1890s and early 20th century. He is best known for his influential supernatural, fantasy, and horror fiction. His novella The Great God Pan (1890; 1894) has garnered a reputation as a classic of horror. (Stephen King called it "Maybe the best [horror story] in the English language".) He also is well known for his leading role in creating the legend of the Angels of Mons.



Early years

Machen was born Arthur Llewelyn Jones, in Caerleon, Monmouthshire, though he usually referred to the county by its Welsh name Gwent. The beautiful landscape of Monmouthshire, with its associations of Celtic, Roman, and medieval history, made a powerful impression on him, and his love of it is at the heart of many of his works.

Machen's father, John Edward Jones, became vicar of the tiny church of Llandewi Fach, near Caerleon, and his son was brought up at the rectory there. Jones had adopted his wife's maiden name, Machen, to inherit a legacy, legally becoming "Jones-Machen"; his son was baptised under that name and later used a shortened version of his full name, Arthur Machen, as a pen-name.

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