Chesterton, Gilbert Keith

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Chesterton, Gilbert Keith


Born May 29,1874, in London; died June 14, 1936, in Beaconsfield. English writer and thinker. A major writer of detective literature.

In 1900, Chesterton began contributing regularly to liberal newspapers and magazines. During his life he published collections of poems, essays, and short stories. Chesterton wrote several short-story collections about the priest-detective Father Brown, including The Innocence of Father Brown (1911) and The Incredulity of Father Brown (1926). Chesterton wrote six novels, the best known of which were The Napoleon of Notting Hill (1904; Russian translation The Napoleon From the Suburb, 1925) and The Man Who Was Thursday (1908; Russian translation, 1914); several books of literary criticism; and books of a religious character.

An adherent of Catholic orthodoxy, Chesterton based his social and ethical program on the theology of Thomism. Orthodoxy (1908) was the title of his best known collection of religious and philosophical thought. Chesterton’s utopia depended on the restoration of “merry old England” with its clearly defined hierarchy. The world he created in his books was unusual, romantically transformed. The entertaining plots, eccentricity, and paradoxical judgments in his works made Chesterton popular with broad circles of readers. He strongly influenced Catholic writers and thinkers, as well as authors writing in the detective genre.


Tremendous Trifles. London, 1909.
Manalive. London [1912].
The Return of Don Quixote. London, 1927.
The Paradoxes of Mr. Pond. London, 1936.
Autobiography. London, 1936.
In Russian translation:
Klub udivitel’nykh promyslov. Leningrad, 1928.
Rasskazy. Moscow, 1958.
Izbr. rasskazy. Moscow, 1971.
Rasskazy. Moscow, 1974.


Lunacharskii, A. V. Sobr. soch., vol. 5. Moscow, 1965. Pages 505–07.
Kashkin, I. A. Dlia chitatelia-sovremennika. Moscow, 1968.
Hollis, C. The Mind of Chesterton. London [1970].
Sullivan, J. G. K. Chesterton: A Bibliography. London, 1958.
Sullivan, J. Chesterton Continued: A Bibliographical Supplement. London [1968].


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.