Ernest William Hornung was born in Middlesbrough, England on 7th June 1866, the third son and youngest of eight children.
Although spending most of his life in England and France he spent two years in Australia from 1884 and that experience was to colour and influence much of his written works.
His most famous character A. J. Raffles, ‘the gentleman thief’, was published first in Cassell's Magazine during 1898 and was to make him famous across the world as the new century dawned.
Hornung also wrote several stage plays and was a gifted poet.
Spending time with the troops in WWI he published Notes of a Camp-Follower on the Western Front during 1919, a detailed account of his time there. This was especially close to his heart as his son, and only child, was killed at the Second Battle of Ypres on 6th July 1915.
Ernest William Hornung died in Saint-Jean-de-Luz, in the south of France on 22nd March 1921.