Arthur Ransome

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Arthur Michell Ransome (born 18 January 1884 in Leeds - died 3 June 1967) was an English writer and journalist. He is best known for writing the Swallows and Amazons series of children's books.

Ransome was born in Leeds. His father was Professor of History there. His father's death in 1897 affected Ransome for a long time. He always tried to get past his belief that his father had did not think his abilities were very good.

Ransome got his formal education first in Windermere. He then studied at the Rugby School (where he lived in Lewis Carroll's study room). He did not fully like his time there because of his poor vision, lack of skills at sports, and limited achievement. He attended Yorkshire College, his father's college studying chemistry. After a year there, he stopped going to the college. He went to London to become a writer. He took low-paying jobs as an office assistant in a publishing company. He also worked as editor of a magazine, Temple Bar Magazine, that was not making much money. During this time, he was writing and became a member of the literary scene of London.

Swallows and Amazons[change | change source]

Ransom's most well known book series, Swallows and Amazons, tells the stories of school-holiday adventures of children. The stories are mostly set in the Lake District and the Norfolk Broads. Many of the books involve sailing. Other common things are fishing and camping. The books are so popular that they give a basis of a tourist industry around Windermere and Coniston Water — the two lakes that Ransome used as the basis for his fictional North Country lake.