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The Knox Brothers
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Penelope Fitzgerald Holmes
The Knox Brothers by Penelope Fitzgerald at Abbey's Bookshop,

The Knox Brothers

Penelope Fitzgerald Holmes



Biography: general;
Family history, tracing ancestors


320 pages

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Penelope Fitzgerald's biography of her remarkable family.

`When I was very young I took my uncles for granted, and it never occurred to me that everyone else in the world was not like them.' In this, only her second book, Penelope Fitzgerald turned her novelist's gaze on the quite extraordinary lives of her father and his three brothers. A masterly work of biography, within which we see Penelope Fitzgerald exercising her pen magnificently before she began her novel-writing career.

Edmund Knox, her father, was one of the most successful editors of Punch. Dillwyn, a Cambridge Greek scholar, was the first to crack the Nazi's message decoding system, Enigma, and in so doing, is estimated to have shortened the Second World War by six months. Wilfred became an Anglo-Catholic priest and an active welfare worker in the East End of London. Ronald, the best known of the four during his lifetime, was Roman Catholic chaplain to Oxford University's student body, preacher, wit, scholar, crime-writer and translator of the Bible.

A homage to a long-forgotten world and a fascinating account of the generation straddling the divide between late Victorian and Edwardian.

By:   Penelope Fitzgerald
Introduction by:   Holmes
Imprint:   Flamingo
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 198mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 21mm
Weight:   230g
ISBN:   9780007118304
ISBN 10:   0007118309
Pages:   320
Publication Date:   March 2002
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Penelope Fitzgerald was one of the most distinctive voices in British literature. The prizewinning author of nine novels, three biographies, and one collection of short stories, she died in 2000.

In this perceptive and affectionate account of the four Knox brothers, Booker Prize-winning novelist Penelope Fitzgerald pays a memorable tribute to her father, the poet and famous Punch editor Eddie Knox and her three Uncles. The most famous of whom was, undoubtedly, Ronnie, a Catholic convert Priest who was also a wit, scholar and translator of the Bible. Dilwyn, the second brother used his agile brain to solve puzzles first as a Greek scholar and then as a highly regarded cryptographer in both World Wars, while Wilfred, the third and equally gifted boy became an Anglo Catholic Priest who dedicated much of his life to welfare work in the East End of London. All four sons of the evangelical Bishop of Manchester shared a passion for words, and the author brings the Victorian vicarage household and its brilliant inhabitants vividly alive. (Kirkus UK)

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