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William Wymark Jacobs

© the copyright holder. Photo credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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At sixteen, Jacobs became a clerk in the civil service, later becoming a clerk in the Savings Bank department. From 1885, he contributed anonymous sketches to Blackfriars magazine. In the early 1890s Jerome K. Jerome accepted a number of his stories for The Idler and To-Day, and in 1895 his work was published in the Strand Magazine. His first collection of short stories, Many Cargoes, appeared in 1896; three years later he became a full-time author. The majority of his output was humorous, but he is now best remembered for his macabre tales The Monkey's Paw, and The Toll House, which appeared in the 1901 collection of short stories The Lady of the Barge.

National Portrait Gallery, London





oil on canvas


H 67.3 x W 53.3 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Given by the sitter's executors, 1944

Work type



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National Portrait Gallery, London

St Martin’s Place, London, Greater London WC2H 0HE England

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