An Irish Writer Of Some Repute

While I have been beavering away at my alphabet, a few other things have cropped up which I couldn’t easily slot into the scheme. Among them, this:

“One evening, an acquaintance of mine, who is an Irish writer of some repute, having drunk rather more than was good for him, a by no means unusual occurrence, in attempting to stagger home from his club, by some means he could never quite explain, got into a strange house instead of his own, and found himself in a semi-dark room full of queer-looking people, male and female, clad in leopard skins. Being given a skin by a dark, foreign-looking girl, he tried to put it on and, in spite of his addled senses, he so far succeeded that no one appeared to notice it was upside down. Probably no one paid any heed to him, everyone’s attention being centred on a woman, who was standing in the middle of the room, haranguing them. My friend could not see her very distinctly owing to the lights being turned down, but he judged her to be coloured, she looked so dark, and not a British subject, as she spoke with a decided foreign accent. The cool night air, blowing into the room, through an open window near at hand, gradually sobered him, and his brain became quite clear. He realised then that the people around him belonged to some strange exotic cult, and finally the amazing fact that they were Leopard and Panther People dawned on him.”

The quotation is from Strange Cults And Secret Societies Of Modern London by Elliott O’Donnell, published in 1934. If his book is to be believed, Mr O’Donnell could hardly walk into a pub or a hotel lobby, or stroll through a park, without bumping into someone who had an astonishing tale to tell of weird and hitherto unsuspected goings-on in the city and its suburbs. You will be hearing more from him in coming days.

2 thoughts on “An Irish Writer Of Some Repute

  1. I am trying to identify the “Irish writer of some repute” who inadvertantly attended a meeting of the Leopard and Panther People. I was thinking (hoping) it was Yeats, but he was only in London for a few years and went back when he was sixteen. George Bernard Shaw would have been great, but he didn’t drink. I’m looking at Sean O’Casey now and trying to find evidence of a fondness for the occult and drink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.