Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Sime Again?

Another Sime-related reference that has proven elusive over the years is to a novel by Arnold Golsworthy called Death and the Woman, published by Laurence Greening in 1898. Sime is supposed to have done the cover design. Of course the story is more complicated that this. 

Arnold [Holcombe] Golsworthy (1865-1939) is probably best remembered as an editor, though he also published a number of books, mostly in the 1890s. He co-founded and co-edited with Leonard Raven-Hill the literary magazine The Butterfly, which emphasized art and humor. It ran for ten issues in 1893-1894, and was resurrected for another twelve issues in 1899-1900. His fiction all appeared from smaller, off-trail publishers, and included  Death and the Women (1895); Hands in the Darkness (1899); A Cry in the Night (1899); and The New Master (1901). Two further novels appeared under the pseudonym Arnold Holcombe, The Odd Man (1910) and A Little World (1913), before his final book, The Fanatic: A Drama in Verse (1925) appeared as by Golsworthy. 

The bibliographically attentive may note that I date Death and the Woman to 1898 in the first paragraph, and to 1895 in the second. This is not a mistake, even though the British Museum Catalogue does not list any 1895 edition. However, the English Catalogue of Books notes the October 1895 release of the book (2s 6d from Simpkin), and this edition was reviewed in the Glasgow Herald for 24 October 1895.The Greening edition, co-published with the Favourite Publishing Company, came out in June 1898 at 1s, and was noted as a "New ed." in The English Catalogue of Books. This edition has the Sime cover, but it was not original to the book. Death and the Woman was also serialized in the short-lived magazine called Eureka, which was founded in 1897 and for a time co-edited by Sidney Sime.  Sime's illustration appeared with the serialized Golsworthy novel. 

Death and the Woman is a rare book today, in any form. Below is the cover.  Credit goes to The Bookseller on Safari blog, where there is very interesting posting about the book and author, under the title "A Very Shocking Shocker" by Laurence Worms of Ash Rare Books.  Read it here


  1. A friend of mine found what she thought was a print in a charity shop. I could tell it was an actual original drawing, and on visiting an exhibition on witchcraft in art I was saw one by Sime that was very similar in style. Checking with the Sime family confirmed it was by him.

  2. Sime's own copy of "The Butterfly, Volume 1" -- given to him by Walter Lewis Emanuel -- is currently for sale on ebay.