Massey, Gerald (1828-1907)
Massey, Gerald (1828-1907)
British poet born May 29, 1828, in Hertfordshire, England. He grew up in poverty, earned a living by working in a factory from the age of eight, and learned to read at a penny school. Massey became a socialist and edited a radical journal, and he also wrote poems, which were favorably noticed by established poets such as Browning and Tennyson. His first wife, Rosina Knowles, was a Spiritualist medium.
Massey based one volume of his poetry, A Tale of Eternity (1870), on personal experience of a haunted house. He soon lost some of his early popularity, however, when he was said to have gone over to the Spiritualists. In response he confessed:
"For the truth's sake I ought to explain that the spiritualism to be found in my poetry is no delusive idealism, derived from hereditary belief in a resurrection of the dead. My faith in the future life is founded upon facts in nature and realities of my own personal experience. These facts have been more or less known to me personally during forty years of familiar face-to-face acquaintanceship, therefore my certitude is not premature; they have given me proof palpable that our very own human identity and intelligence do persist after the blind of darkness has been drawn down in death."
In 1872 Massey presided at the meeting in London marking the departure of Emma Hardinge Britten to Australia. His address with some additions was later printed under the title Concerning Spiritualism.
In his later years he published four large volumes in which he tried to trace the origin of language, symbols, myths, and religions. The work was reminiscent of Godfrey Higgins (1772-1833). His final product was not well received during his lifetime, the idea of Africa as the birthplace of mankind being quite unacceptable in Victorian England. Thus A Book of the Beginnings (1881) and his other texts were largely ignored or ridiculed until later archaeological discoveries provided more solid evidence in support of Massey's themes.
He died on October 12, 1907.
Massey, Gerald. Ancient Egypt. 2 vols. London, 1907. Reprint, New York: Samuel Weiser, 1970.
——. A Book of the Beginnings. 2 vols. London, 1881. Reprint, New Hyde Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1974.
——. The Natural Genesis. 2 vols. London: n.p., 1883.
"Massey, Gerald (1828-1907)." Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. . Encyclopedia.com. (March 21, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/massey-gerald-1828-1907
"Massey, Gerald (1828-1907)." Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. . Retrieved March 21, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/massey-gerald-1828-1907
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.