Richard Henry Horne, an English author, born in London about 1803. Educated at the royal military college, Sandhurst, he entered the Mexican navy as a midshipman, and served until the conclusion of the war of independence. Returning to England, he devoted himself to literature, and wrote "Cosmo de Medi-cis," "The Death of Marlowe," and "The Death Fetch," tragedies founded on Elizabethan models; followed by "The Adventures of a London Doll," "The Good-Natured Bear," and "An Exposition of the False Medium, and Barriers excluding Men of Genius from the Public" (1838). Subsequently he produced a tragedy, "Gregory the Seventh" (1840), preceded by an essay on tragic influence; a "Life of Napoleon" (2 vols. 8vo, 1841); and "Orion, an Epic Poem" (1843), the price of which was announced upon the title page to be one farthing. This sarcasm upon the public appreciation of modern epic poetry attracted attention, and three large editions were sold at a farthing a copy. In the fourth edition the price was raised to a shilling, and in the fifth to a crown.
This poem was followed by " A New Spirit of the Age," being criticisms upon living British authors (1844); " Spirit of Peers and People " (1846); "Ballads and Romances" (1846); "Judas Iscariot, a Miracle Play" (1848); "The Poor Artist, or Seven Eyesights and One Object" (1850); and " The Dreamer and the Worker " (1851). He also contributed largely to periodical literature. In 1852 Horne went to Australia, where, after digging in the gold mines, he became successively chief of police, gold commissioner, and territorial magistrate, and in 1859 published "Australian Facts and Principles." He returned to England in 1870.