Society of Authors
From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia
Society of Authors is an article published in The Daily Telegraph on 21 april 1904.
Arthur Conan Doyle at the annual dinner of the Incorporated Society of Authors, at the Hotel Cecil (London) on 20 april 1904.
Society of Authors
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle proposed "Our Guests" at the annual dinner of the Incorporated Society of Authors, at the Hotel Cecil, last night. Coupled with the toast were the names of the Lord Chief Justice of England and Sir W. B. Richmond. With regard to the latter, the speaker referred with pleasure to the fact that he had joined the London County Council, for, he added, there was no other body on earth which was more in need of an artist among its members. It would take a man with the talent of Michael Angelo, with the despotic power of Napoleon I., and with the all-round energy of the Kaiser William to snake this city of mean streets and of the common-place to be what it should be — a fitting centre of the greatest Empire that the world had ever seen. (Cheers.) We had mere vulgar wealth and size, but to make London what it should be we wanted a great deal more than that. Responding to the toast of the evening, Mr. Sidney Lee said he thought the society had done genuine service by taking part in the litigation which was carried to the House of Lords with regard to the question of copyright. Although as authors they might regret that the decision was not in their favour, still, nothing could be more injurious to the interest of publishers and authors alike than the uncertainty which previously existed as to the right interpretation of the law affecting contributions to encyclopaedias. They now knew exactly where they stood, and until the law was altered no further difficulty could arose on that score. Mr. Douglas Freshfield occupied the chair, and among those prevent, in addition to the names already mentioned, were the Bishop of Bristol, Mr. Anthony Hope, "Maarten Maartens," Mr. and Mrs. Ian Malcolm, Mrs. Mona Caird, Mrs. Humphreys ("Rita "), Mr. Oscar Browning, Sir Henry Norman, Sir Harry Johnston, and Mr. G. Herbert Thring.