Pseudonym of an unidentified UK writer who also wrote as Dryasdust, and who flourished around the end of the 19th century, though his archaic style has led to the suspicion that much of his work had been composed earlier; Mike Ashley has suggested that more than one writer may have been responsible for the Dryasdust/Halidom oeuvre. The major work is the Tales of the Wonder Club (coll 1899-1900 3 vols as by Dryasdust; rev in 3 vols as Tales of the Wonder Club: First Series 1903, Second Series 1904 and Third Series 1905, all as by MYH), a set of Club Stories told in a haunted Inn, with fantasy only in the first two volumes. Typically of the genre, most of the stories are light in tone, and some are Tall Tales – like "The Mermaid", in which a jolly tar must agree to an amputation and a prosthetic tail before he can marry his beloved Mermaid. The Gipsy Queen (1903) is a nonfantasy play from vol 3. The Wizard's Mantle (1902 as by Dryasdust; rev 1903 as by MYH) is a tale involving Invisibility. Almost all of MYH's later work is Horror; it includes The Spirit Lovers and Other Tales (coll 1903), A Weird Transformation (1904), The Woman in Black (1906), Zoe's Revenge (1908), about an animate Doll, The Poet's Curse (1911), in which the desecration of Shakespeare's tomb wreaks disaster, and The Poison Ring (1912). [JC]
"M Y Halidom"