Bradley, H(erbert) Dennis (1878-1934)

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Bradley, H(erbert) Dennis (1878-1934)

British author who wrote in support of Spiritualism and psychic phenomena. He was also a direct voice medium, an ability he claimed he developed after his experiences with the medium George Valiantine in America.

The story of his first sittings and Valiantine's first visit to England is told in Bradley's book, Towards the Stars (1924). His second volume, The Wisdom of the Gods (1925), narrates Valiantine's second visit and gives an account of the author's own séances, at which many prominent people attended. He was approached by the Society for Psychical Research (SPR; London) for test sittings, but, on the advice of his controls, he refused. Later Bradley declared open enmity to the SPR, resigned his membership, and in March 1931 issued a pamphlet of indictment.

Bradley was the greatest propagandist and champion of Valiantine's mediumship. He cleared the medium of three exposure charges, only to launch the most serious accusation himself in And After, published in October 1931. As a result, R. Sproull took action for libel against the author, obtained a judgment with £500 damages, and the book was withdrawn after July 1932. By now, Bradley's own enthusiasm had considerably abated. In an interview to the LondonDaily Express on October 8, 1931, he declared that the general tendency of Spiritualism in its present public form was toward evil, that as a religion it was a farce, and that, nevertheless, "genuine phenomena do occur and genuine communication with spirit entities is, in certain cases, possible and practicable." Bradley died November 20, 1934.