Saturday, September 23, 2006

Happy birthday, Baroness Orczy.

Emma Magdalena Rosalia Maria Josefa Barbara Orczy, aka Baroness Orczy, was born on September 23, 1865. She died in 1947. Best known for that swashbuckling figure The Scarlet Pimpernel, she also made some notable mystery contributions: Stories with Bill Owen, known as "The Old Man in the Corner," often considered the first appearance of the modern armchair detective; and Lady Molly of Scotland Yard (1910), in which Lady Molly and her maid Mary Granard join Scotland Yard's "Female Department," as Lady Molly seeks to exonerate her wrongly accused husband. As Granard comments, "[M]y firm belief is that we shouldn't have half so many undetected crimes if some of the so-called mysteries were put to the test of feminine investigation."

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