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Hector Hugh Munro (18 December 1870 – 13 November 1916), better known by the pen name Saki, was a British writer, whose witty and sometimes macabre stories satirised Edwardian society and culture. He is considered a master of the short story and is often compared to O. Henry and Dorothy Parker. His tales feature delicately drawn characters and finely judged narratives. "The Open Window" may be his most best known, with a closing line ("Romance at short notice was her speciality") that has entered the lexicon.

In addition to his short stories (which were first published in newspapers, as was the custom of the time, and then collected into several volumes) he also wrote a full-length play, The Watched Pot, in collaboration with Charles Maude; two one-act plays; a historical study, The Rise of the Russian Empire, the only book published under his own name; a short novel, The Unbearable Bassington; the episodic The Westminster Alice (a Parliamentary parody of Alice in Wonderland), and When William Came, subtitled A Story of London Under the Hohenzollerns, a fantasy about a future German invasion of Britain. He was influenced by Oscar Wilde, Lewis Carroll, and Kipling, and himself influenced A. A. Milne, Noël Coward, and P. G. Wodehouse.

The name Saki is often thought to be a reference to the cupbearer in the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam, a poem mentioned disparagingly by the eponymous character in "Reginald on Christmas Presents" and alluded to in a few other stories. (This is stated as fact by Emlyn Williams in his 1978 introduction to a Saki anthology) It may, however, be a reference to the South American primate of the same name, "a small, long-tailed monkey from the Western Hemisphere" that is a central character in "The Remoulding of Groby Lington"

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Hector Hugh Munro."
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