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James Malcolm Rymer

James Malcolm Rymer was a British nineteenth century writer of penny dreadfuls, and is the probable author of Varney the Vampire, often attributed to fellow writer Thomas Peckett Prest, and co-author (with Prest) of The String of Pearls, in which the notorious villain Sweeney Todd makes his literary debut.Information about Rymer is sketchy. In the London Directory for 1841 he is listed as a civil engineer, living at 42 Burton Street, and the British Museum catalogue mentions him in 1842 as editing the Queen's Magazine. Between 1842 to the 1867 he wrote up to 115 popular novels for the English bookseller and publisher, Edward Lloyd, including the best-sellers Ada the Betrayed, Varney the Vampyre and The String of Pearls. Rymer's novels appeared in England under his own name as well as anagrammatic pseudonyms such as Malcolm J. Errym and Malcolm J. Merry.He died on 11 August 1884 and is buried in Kensal Green cemetery, west London.

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