John Le Carré (8166 words)


David John Moore Cornwell, known to millions of readers as John le Carré, rightly believes that if “childhood is the credit balance of the writer, . . .I was born a millionaire” (le Carré, 2016: 256). Cornwell was born in the genteel south-coast town of Poole, Dorset, on October 19th, 1931, to a reprobate father, Ronald (“Ronnie”) Thomas Archibald Cornwell (1906-1975), and an emotionally unstable mother, Olive Moore Glassey (1913-1982), who abandoned her family, eloping with one of Ronnie’s business partners when Cornwell was only five and his brother, Anthony (“Tony”), seven. Although he was reunited with her in the early 1950s, Cornwell never forgave Olive’s …

Citation: Beene, LynnDianne. "John Le Carré". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 March 2002; last revised 27 June 2017. [, accessed 31 October 2020.]

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