Fantastic Fridays: L. T. Meade

Welcome to a new series on Irish writers of the fantastic. Over the next few months Swan River Press will be taking us on a tour through Ireland’s fantasy heritage.

L. T. Meade
“She stands there at the foot of the bed; she wears a hood, and her face is yellow. She has been dead a long time.”
–“The Woman with the Hood” (1897)


L. T. Meade (1844?-1914) was the pen name of Elizabeth Thomasina Toulmin Smith, née Meade. She was born in Bandon, Co. Cork and started writing at the age of seventeen, quickly establishing herself as one of the most prolific and bestselling authors of the day. In addition to her books for young people, she also penned mystery stories, sensational fiction, romances, historical, and adventure novels; part of this tremendous output was co-written with other authors, such as Robert Eustace (1854-1943). Her most notable works include A World of Girls (1886), Light o’ the Morning (1899), The Brotherhood of the Seven Kings (1899), and The Sorceress of the Strand (1903). Meade also edited Atalanta, a popular girls’ magazine, in which she published H. Rider Haggard, R. L. Stevenson, and Katharine Tynan. She died in Oxford on 27 October 1914. Although now much of her writing is largely unread, her stories are occasionally reprinted as examples of early crime fiction.


Read L. T. Meade at Project Gutenberg: