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Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/George Augustus Henry Sala

< Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)


Journalist, b. in London, 24 Nov., 1828; d. at Brighton, 8 Dec., 1895, having been received into the Church before death. His grandfather, a native of Rome, came to England in 1776; the family were connected with the stage. Being an unusually precocious child, young Sala began at fifteen to earn his living by draughtsmanship. His versatile talent then passed to scene-painting, illustrating books, etching and engraving, finally finding its real vocation in journalism. Attracting the notice of Dickens, he became a regular contributor to "Household Words" and "All the Year Round", and was sent as special correspondent to Russia.

His literary output was large and various, though his style was criticized as florid. From 1857 he worked for the "Daily Telegraph", acting as special correspondent all over the world. Much of this journalistic work was republished in book form. He was a man of social and convivial habits who prided himself on his extensive knowledge of cookery. Though earning a large income, his expensive tastes caused him frequent embarrassment, and the failure of his magazine, "Sala's Journal", straitened his circumstances in the last years. His love for London, which he knew intimately, characterizes many of his books.

Sala, Life and Adventures of George Augustus Sala, (London, 1895); Yates, Edmund Yates: his Recollections and Experiences (London, 1882); Vizetelly, Glances back through Seventy Years (London, 1893); Lee in Dict. Nat. Biog.

EDWIN BURTON