Clemence Housman

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The Were-Wolf by Housman.

Clemence Annie Housman (23 November 1861– 6 December 1955) was an author, illustrator and activist in the women's suffrage movement. She was the sister of A. E. Housman and Laurence Housman. She was born in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire. Her novels included The Were-Wolf, Unknown Sea and The Life Of Sir Aglovale De Galis.[1] She was also a leading figure in the Suffragette movement.[2]


Clemence was born in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire.[3] She went to the South London School of Technical Art in 1883 where she learned, among other things, wood engraving.[4] She worked for a time as an engraver for illustrated papers such as The Graphic.[4] In 1908 she subscribed to the Women's Social and Political Union, and in 1909 she was a co-founder, with her brother Laurence Housman, of the Suffrage Atelier.[4] She made banners for the suffrage movement between 1908 and 1914.[4]

In 1910 she became a member of the committee of the Women's Tax Resistance League.[4] She was arrested on 30 September 1911 for non-payment of taxes and she was sent to Holloway Prison, but she was released after just one week following protests and demonstrations by her supporters.[4]

She lived with her brother Laurence for much of her life. After World War I, they lived in a cottage in the village of Ashley in Hampshire, and then, in 1924, moved to Street, Somerset.[5][6]


Clemence published three novels, and she illustrated some of the fantasies written by her brother Laurence.[7] Her first novel, The Were-wolf (1896), was an allegorical erotic fantasy featuring a female werewolf.[7] HP Lovecraft said of the Were-Wolf that it: “attains a high degree of gruesome tension and achieves to some extent the atmosphere of authentic folklore”.[8] The Life of Sir Aglovale de Galis is an Arthurian fantasy.[7]


As illustrator[edit]


  1. ^ Open Library page for Clemence Housman
  2. ^ Sandra Stanley Holton (1996), Suffrage days, London: Routledge, ISBN 0-415-10941-8, 0415109418 
  3. ^ Elizabeth Crawford, ‘Housman, Clemence Annie (1861–1955)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 7 Feb 2011
  4. ^ a b c d e f Elizabeth Crawford (2002) The Women's Suffrage Movement: A Reference Guide 1866-1928, page 424. Routledge. ISBN 0203031091
  5. ^ A. T. Lloyd, J. E. S. Brooks, (1996), The History of New Milton and its Surrounding Area, Centenary Edition, page 66
  6. ^ "Catalogue of Laurence Housman's works" (Word). Street Society. Retrieved 7 June 2012. 
  7. ^ a b c Brian Stableford, (2009), The A to Z of Fantasy Literature, page 205. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 0810868296
  8. ^ Supernatural Horror in Literature; The Weird Tradition in the British Isles, HP Lovecraft

Further reading[edit]

  • Elizabeth Oakley, (2009), Inseparable Siblings: A Portrait of Clemence and Laurence Housman. Brewin Books. ISBN 185858440X

External links[edit]