A Night in Romeby William Harrison Ainsworth
William Harrison Ainsworth (1805 - 1882) was an English historical novelist born in Manchester. He trained as a lawyer, but the legal profession held no attraction for him. While completing his legal studies in London he met the publisher John Ebers, at that time manager of the King's Theatre, Haymarket. Ebers introduced Ainsworth to literary and dramatic circles, and to his daughter, who became Ainsworth's wife.
His first success as a writer came with Rookwood in 1834, which features Dick Turpin as its leading character. In 1839 he published another novel featuring a highwayman, Jack Sheppard. From 1840 to 1842 he edited Bentley's Miscellany, from 1842 to 1853, Ainsworth's Magazine and subsequently The New Monthly Magazine.
His Lancashire novels cover altogether 400 years and include The Lancashire Witches, 1848, Mervyn Clitheroe, 1857, and The Leaguer of Lathom. Jack Sheppard, Guy Fawkes, 1841, Old St Paul's, 1841, Windsor Castle, 1843, and The Lancashire Witches are regarded as his most successful novels.
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