Robert Hugh Benson

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R H Benson aged 35
Robert Hugh Benson (1871–October 1914) was an Anglican clergyman, who became a Roman Catholic priest. He was also a writer, whose best known work is the "prophetic" dystopian novel, Lord of the World.

Benson was the son of Edward White Benson, Archbishop of Canterbury. He was the younger brother of Edward Frederic Benson and A C Benson.[1]

Benson was educated at Eton College and studied classics and theology at Trinity College, Cambridge, from 1890 to 1893.

Asa young man, he found the prospect of marriage "quite inconceivable."[2]

In 1904, soon after becoming a Catholic priest, he formed a passionate friendship with Frederick Rolfe. For two years, they exchanged letters "not only weekly, but at times daily, and of an intimate character, exhaustingly charged with emotion."[3]


  1. Mike Ashley, "The Essential Writers: Blood Brothers" (Profile of E.F. , A.C. and R. H. Benson). Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone Magazine (p. 63-70). May/June 1984.
  2. Robert Hugh Benson, Confessions of a Convert, Longmans, Green and Co., 1913.
  3. David Hilliard, "UnEnglish and UnManly: Anglo-Catholicism and Homosexuality" in Victorian Studies, Winter 1982, p.199, quoting C C Martindale, The Life of Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson, 2 vols. (London: Longmans, Green and Co, 1916), II, page 96.