Tag Archives: Golden Dawn

The Hellfire Club

30 Nov

The term ‘Hellfire Club’ is of wide application and can be used to loosely describe a number of secret societies that existed in the 18th and 19th centuries as gathering places for high-ranking members of society to engage in acts that they did not necessarily want the rest of the world to know about. Describing these institutions is a somewhat difficult task because, by their very nature, they were shady, secretive and hid both their activities and their membership jealously. The best known Hellfire clubs included the Duke of Wharton’s Club, the Order of the Friars of St. Francis of Wycombe,  and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

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Algernon Blackwood – The Ghost Man

25 Oct

Born in London the son of a nobleman, Algernon Blackwood (1869-1951) was nevertheless a rebel against conformity and turned his back on a strict religious upbringing to travel across North America in his twenties, almost starving in the process. Eventually he made his living as a reporter and short story writer in New York, where his output included travel, adventure, humour and some work of a semi-mystical nature. Like his contemporary Arthur Machen, another writer of supernatural fiction, Blackwood became a member of one of the factions of the Kabbalistic order, the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. His interest in the supernatural led him to investigate several haunted houses and start writing the stories which made him famous in the form of several collections of tales of the psychic and the macabre, beginning with The Empty House and other Ghost Stories, which appeared in 1906, and culminating in Tales of the Uncanny and Supernatural in 1949. His reputation grew with radio and television appearances, earning him the epithet ‘The Ghost Man’.

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