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John Stuart Hay (1875-1949), an Oxford graduate and clergyman who later sold antiques in Athens, contributed to the Uranian canon a biography of the Roman Emperor Elagabalus (Heliogabalus), infamous as the ultimate illustration of the potential and dangers of actualized Decadence. Hay's 1911 "psychobiography" The Amazing Emperor Heliogabalus "was attacked on all sides - for its subject and content, for historical inaccuracies and a lack of scholarly rigor, for its style and whiff of perversity, as well as for various instances of overt and easily recognizable plagiarism." Nonetheless, "rather than its historical accuracy (which is often questionable) . . . [what] makes this biography worthy of rejuvenation . . . [is that it] has much to say, not only about the late Uranians and their perceptions of pederastic and homoerotic history and the figures who peopled it, but also about the perceptions, or lack of perceptions, of their hetero-normative contemporaries" (from the Editor's Introduction).
Beyond the text itself, the present scholarly edition includes extensive notes, illustrations, and appendices, all of which serve to elucidate the original, as well as to situate it within its Edwardian context and its Uranian milieu.
About the Editor
Michael Matthew Kaylor is Assistant Professor of English in the Department of English & American Studies at the Faculty of Arts, Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. His scholarly works include: Secreted Desires: The Major Uranians: Hopkins, Pater and Wilde (Masaryk University Press, 2006); editions of Forrest Reid's 1905 novella The Garden God: A Tale of Two Boys (Valancourt Books, 2007), Edward Perry Warren's three-volume, 1928-1930 apologia A Defence of Uranian Love (Valancourt, 2009), and Forrest Reid's 1931-1944 magnum opus, The Tom Barber Trilogy (Valancourt, 2011); and the two-volume Lad's Love: An Anthology of Uranian Poetry and Prose (Valancourt, 2010).
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