Photographs of Famous Authors from History in Color

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Most of those reading this are aware of some of the most iconic pieces of literature – War and Peace, Peter Pan, Lord of the Rings, Around the World in Eighty Days, but do you know what the authors look like? In this article, you will have the opportunity to see colorized photographs of the authors of these works (along with others). Colorizer Richard White spent hours carefully coloring old black and white photographs and now we get to see them here! You are able to drag the picture left and right to see a before (black and white) and after (colorized) version of the photograph!

Leo Tolstoy

Colorized photograph of Leo Tolstoy in 1897.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Count Leo Tolstoy was a Russian writer and is widely regarded as one of the greatest authors of all time. He was born on 9th September 1828 and died on 7th November 1910 at the age of 82. He is best known for novels such as War and Peace, The Death of Ivan Ilyich, and Anna Karenina.

James Matthew Barrie

Colorized photograph of Sir J. M. Barrie in 1892.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

J. M. Barrie was a Scottish author that was born on the 9th May 1860 and died in June 1937 at the age of 77. He is best known as the creator of the character Peter Pan in his 1904 play and 1911 novel. Before he died, he gave the rights away to the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

J. R. R. Tolkien

Colorized photograph of J. R. R. Tolkien in military uniform in 1916.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was an English author and poet that was born in South Africa on the 3rd January 1892 and died on the 2nd September 1973. He is best known for his fantasy novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and is widely regarded as one of the greatest fantasy authors of all time. He served as a Lieutenant in the Lancashire Fusiliers during the First World War.

Jules Verne

Colorized photo of Jules Verne in circa 1884.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Jules Verne was a French writer that was best known for his science fiction and adventure novels such as Journey to the Center of the Earth, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, and Around the World in Eighty Days. His books have sold over 100 million copies around the world, making him one of the best-selling authors to ever live. He was born in Nantes, France on the 8th February 1828 and died in Amiens, France on the 24th March 1905 at the age of 77.

Joseph Conrad

Colorized photograph of Joseph Conrad at the age of 67 in 1904.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Joseph Conrad, born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski, was a Polish-British author that was born in Berdychiv, Russian Empire on the 3rd December 1857, and died in Kent, England at the age of 66 on the 3rd August 1924. He is best known for his novels Heart of Darkness, Nostromo, Lord Jim, and The Secret Agent. He published 14 novels over a 28 year period along with a collection of short stories, memoirs, and collaborations.

Mark Twain

Colorization of Mark Twain in 1907.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name, Mark Twain, was an American author widely regarded as one of the greatest American authors of all time. He was born in Missouri on the 30th November 1835 and died in Connecticut on the 21st April 1910 at the age of 1910. His most famous works include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. As well as a writer, he was also an iconic humorist, which is someone who uses humor in writing or public speaking but not only to elicit laughs.

James Joyce

Colorized photo of James Joyce in Zürich, Switzerland in circa 1918.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

James Joyce was an Irish writer and poet that was born on the 2nd February 1882 and died in Switzerland at the age of 58 on the 13th January 1941. He is best known for his novels Ulysses,  A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Finnegans Wake, and for his collection of short stories known as Dubliners.

Walt Whitman

Colorized photograph of Walt Whitman in circa 1865.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Walt Whitman was an American poet that was born in New York on the 31st May 1819 and died in New Jersey on the 26th March 1892 at the age of 72. He is best known for his collection of poems Leaves of Grass, and his four poems about the death of Abraham Lincoln: O Captain! My Captain!, When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d, Hush’d Be the Camps To-day, and This Dust was Once the Man.

Edgar Allan Poe

Colorized photo of Edgar Allan Poe in circa 1849.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Edgar Allan Poe was an American writer and poet born on the 19th January 1809 in Massachusetts and died at the age of 40 on the 7th October 1849 in Maryland. He is best known for his poems and short stories such as The Raven, Annabel Lee, The Cask of Amontillado, and The Tell-Tale Heart.

Alfred Tennyson

Colorization of a photograph of Alfred, Lord Tennyson in 1869.
Credit: Richard White // Original: Wikimedia Commons

Alfred, Lord Tennyson was a British poet born on the 6th August 1809 and died on 6th October 1892 at the age of 83. He is best known for his poem The Charge of the Light Brigade which was about the military action known as Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War. Tennyson was the Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom from 1850 until his death in 1892 which is an honorary position appointed by the Monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister that wrote poems for significant national occasions. He is also well-known for the poems In Memoriam A. H. H., The Lady of Shalott, and Ulysses.

Be sure to check out more of Richard White‘s work on his Instagram. You can also read about another one of his colorized images: Tallest Soldier in World War 2: 7ft 3in (2.21m) Jakob Nacken

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