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Ferguson Wright Hume (1859-1932), known as Fergus Hume, was a prolific English novelist. Shortly after graduation Hume relocated to Melbourne, Australia, where he obtained a job as a barristers' clerk. He began writing plays, but found it impossible to persuade the managers of Melbourne theatres to accept or even to read them. Finding that the novels of Émile Gaboriau were then very popular in Melbourne, Hume determined to write a novel of the same kind. The result was The Mystery of a Hansom Cab, set in Melbourne. It was self-published in 1886 and became a great success. After the success of his first novel and the publication of another, Professor Brankel's Secret (c. 1886), Hume returned to England in 1888.