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Ernest Rhys

Ernest Percival Rhys (1859 - 1946) was an English writer and editor, now best known for his role as the pioneering editor of the Everyman’s Library series. Rhys also wrote essays, stories, poetry, novels and plays. Rhys was employed doing editorial work at Walter Scott publishing company from 1886 for five years, where he worked primarily on the Camelot Classics Series of reprints and translations. In 1906 Rhys suggested to J. M. Dent, the publisher for whom he was working on The Lyric Poets series, the idea of an ‘Everyman’ project of affordable classics. Their aim was to publish 1000 titles and this target was finally reached ten years after Rhys’s death.

Schreiner had agreed to write an ‘Introduction’ for a new Walter Scott edition of Mary Wollstonecraft’s 1792 A Vindication of the Rights of Woman but this was never completed. Her extant letters to Rhys concern their business dealings, and in particular the details of the proposed Wollstonecraft introduction. A very early draft fragment of Schreiner’s ‘Introduction’ to Wollstonecraft appears in Carolyn Burdett (1994) History Workshop Journal 37: 189-93.

For further information see:
Alec Waugh, revised by Katharine Chubbuck (2004) ‘Rhys, Ernest Percival (1859-1946)’ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography Oxford University Press http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/35733
John Kimberley Roberts (1983) Ernest Rhys Cardiff: University of Wales Press
Ernest Rhys (1931) Everyman Remembers London: Dent
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