The opening line of John Seabrook’s Wikipedia bio is pretty impressive, but here we find a better:
Pseudonym of UK-born author William Lancaster Gribbon (1879-1940), who emigrated to the USA in 1909 after his early life as a confidence man, ivory poacher and all-round rogue in British Africa had culminated in a prison sentence.
The context I found this quote was, incidentally, posting on my other blog A Medical Education a passage from Mundy from a 1922 novel that describes synaesthesia. Here it is, from “Jimgrim and a Secret Society“:
Did it ever strike you that sound has color? The din that bell made was dazzling, diamond white, reflecting all the colors of the prism in its facets. When I spoke of it afterwards I found that Grim had noticed the same thing.
Two years ago I found a passage from John Buchan’s 1932 The Gap in the Curtain which also described synaesthesia:
The Professor elicited from the coy Reggie that in his childhood he had been in the habit of seeing abstract things in a concrete form. For Reggie the different days of the week had each a special shape, and each of the Ten Commandments a special colour. Monday was a square and Saturday an oval, and Sunday a circle with a segment bitten out.; The Third Commandment was dark blue, and the Tenth a pale green with spots. Reggie had thought of Sin as a substance like black salt, and the Soul as something in the shape of a kidney bean.