(1870—1916) short-story writer

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British short-story writer.

Munro was born in Burma, where his father was inspector-general of police. After his mother's death he was sent to England to be brought up by his grandmother and aunts in a straitlaced household, the funny side of which he only appreciated in later life. After leaving Bedford Grammar School, Munro went back to Burma to join the police (1893), but failing health forced his resignation and return to England.

Earning his living as a journalist, he wrote political satire for the Westminster Gazette and travelled on the Continent as foreign correspondent of the Morning Post (1902–08). In 1904 his first collection of stories was published under the title Reginald. Other volumes of stories followed: Reginald in Russia (1910), The Chronicles of Clovis (1911), and Beasts and Super-Beasts (1914). His novel The Unbearable Bassington appeared in 1912. In all these ‘Saki’ tales his elegant and effete young heroes, Reginald and Clovis, take an often heartless and sometimes cruel delight in the discomfort or downfall of their conventional and pretentious elders in circumstances that are occasionally macabre but always highly amusing.

In World War I Munro enlisted as an ordinary soldier, refusing to accept a commission. In November 1916 he was killed in action.

Subjects: Literature.

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