Eleanor Farjeon (1881-1965) was a British author of unusual talent and imagination.
Many of her books were illustrated by the wonderful illustrator, Edward Ardizzone.
The daughter of a British novelist and granddaughter of a U.S. actor, Eleanor Farjeon grew up in the bohemian literary and dramatic circles of London. Attending opera and theatre at 4 and writing on her father’s typewriter at 7, Farjeon came to public attention at 16 as the librettist of an opera, with music by her brother Harry, which was produced by the Royal Academy of Music. Her success with Nursery Rhymes of London Town (1916), simple tunes originally for adults but adapted and sung in junior schools throughout England, spurred her writing. In addition to such favourites as Martin Pippin in the Apple Orchard (1921) and The Little Bookworm (1955), which won the Carnegie Medal and the first Hans Christian Anderson Award, Farjeon’s prolific writings include children’s educational books, among them Kings and Queens (1932; with Herbert Farjeon); adult books; and memoirs, notably A Nursery in the Nineties (1935; rev. ed. 1960).