- Burroughs, Edgar Rice
born Sept. 1, 1875, Chicago, Ill., U.S.died March 19, 1950, Encino, Calif.U.S. novelist.Burroughs worked as an advertising copywriter before trying fiction. His jungle adventure novel Tarzan of the Apes (1914) became the first of 25 books featuring Tarzan, the son of an English nobleman abandoned in Africa and raised by apes. He wrote 43 other novels.
* * *▪ American novelistborn Sept. 1, 1875, Chicago, Ill., U.S.died March 19, 1950, Encino, Calif.American novelist whose Tarzan stories created a folk hero known around the world.The son of a wealthy businessman, Burroughs was educated at private schools in Chicago, at the prestigious Philips Academy, Andover, Mass. (from which he was expelled), and at Michigan Military Academy, where he subsequently taught briefly. He spent the years 1897 to 1911 in numerous unsuccessful jobs and business ventures in Chicago and Idaho. Eventually settling in Chicago with a wife and three children, he began writing advertising copy and then turned to fiction. His first published piece, “Under the Moons of Mars,” appeared in the adventure magazine All-Story in 1911 and was so successful that Burroughs turned to writing full-time. The first Tarzan story appeared in 1912, followed in 1914 by Tarzan of the Apes, the first of 25 such books about the son of an English nobleman abandoned in the African jungle during infancy and brought up by apes. Burroughs created in Tarzan a figure that instantly captured the popular fancy, as did his many tales set on Mars. The Tarzan stories were translated into more than 56 languages and were also popular in comic-strip, motion-picture, television, and radio versions.In 1919, in order to be near the filming of his Tarzan movies, Burroughs bought an estate near Hollywood (at a site that would later be named Tarzana). He continued to write novels, ultimately publishing some 68 titles in all. During World War II he became a correspondent for the Los Angeles Times and, at age 66, was the oldest war correspondent covering the South Pacific theatre. (See also Tarzan.)
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