Eric Knight


1897 – 1943


Who was Eric Knight?

Eric Oswald Mowbray Knight was an English author who is mainly notable for creating the fictional collie Lassie. He took American citizenship in 1942 shortly before his death.

Born on 10 April 1897, in Menston in Yorkshire, England, Eric Mowbray Knight was the third of four sons born to Frederic Harrison and Marion Hilda Knight, both Quakers. His father was a rich diamond merchant who, when Eric was two years old, was killed during the Boer War. His mother then moved to St. Petersburg, Russia, to work as a governess for the imperial family. She later settled in America.

Knight had a varied career, including service in the Canadian Army during World War I and spells as an art student, newspaper reporter and Hollywood screenwriter.

He married twice, first on 28 July 1917 to Dorothy Caroline Noyes Hall with whom he had three daughters and later divorced, and secondly to Jere Brylawski on 2 December 1932.

His first novel was Song on Your Bugles about the working class in Northern England. As "Richard Hallas", he wrote the hardboiled genre novel You Play The Black and The Red Comes Up. Knight's This Above All is considered one of the significant novels of the Second World War.


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Apr 10, 1897
Also known as
  • Eric Mowbray Knight
  • Eric Oswald Knight
  • Major Eric Knight
  • eric_knight
  • Richard Hallas
  • Eric Oswald Mowbray Knight
  • the late Major Eric Knight
  • United Kingdom
  • United States of America
Jan 15, 1943

on July 23, 2013