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C(yril) Walter Hodges (1909-2004) Biography


See index for SATA sketch: Born March 18, 1909, in Beckenham, Kent, England; died November 26, 2004, in Moretonhampstead, Devon, England. Illustrator and author. Hodges was an award-winning illustrator of children's books whose love of history and the theater were often evident in his work. After attending Dulwich College, he studied for three years at Goldsmith's College of Art. Always interested in the theater, when he completed school he found work as a costumes and scenery designer for the Everyman Theatre in Hampstead. This work did not pay well, unfortunately, and so Hodges found employment at an advertising agency. His first success as an illustrator came when the Radio Times began publishing his work in 1931. Hodges continued to contribute to the publication over the next four decades. His first book, Columbus Sails, was released in 1939; it was the first of many titles for young readers that he would produce. His career was interrupted by World War II, during which Hodges was a captain for the British Army and participated in the Normandy invasion. After the war, Hodges resumed his career as a book illustrator and also worked for a number of theaters, including the Mermaid Theatre in the early 1950s and the St. George's Theatre in 1976. He also lectured at the Brighton Polytechnic School of Art and Design, beginning in 1959. In addition to creative artwork, Hodges wrote many of the children's books he illustrated, including The Namesake (1964), The Overland Launch (1970), and Plain Lane Christmas (1978). His love of history and Shakespeare led to such nonfiction books for children as Shakespeare's Theatre (1964), Magna Carta (1966), The English Civil War (1972), and The Battlement Garden: Britain from the Wars of the Roses to the Age of Shakespeare (1980). He also illustrated books on Shakespeare for adult readers, such as Shakespeare's Second Globe: The Missing Monument (1973), and illustrated books children's authors Kenneth Macfarlane, E. Nesbit, Ian Serraillier, William Mayne, and Richard Armstrong. His last book to be published in his lifetime was Enter the Whole Army: A Pictorial Study of Shakespearean Staging (1999). Hodges, who as a Shakespeare scholar served as a design consultant for the Globe Theatre Reconstruction project at Wayne State University, was working on illustrating the New Cambridge Shakespeare at the time of his death.



Independent (London, England), December 1, 2004, p. 34. Times (London, England), December 7, 2004, p. 54.

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