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Frederick Hazleton – Sweeney Todd

Posted by demonik on June 21, 2009

Frederick Hazleton – Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (W. H. Allen, 1980)

Photo: Graham Miller

Photo: Graham Miller

Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street, has become legendary throughout the world. The macabre story of his luring unsuspecting customers into his shop, slitting their throats and then having his partner in crime – a pastrycook named Mrs Lovett – turn the corpses into meat pies has been a favourite melodrama for more than a century.
Yet for all Sweeney Todd’s notoriety the mystery as to whether or not he really existed has remained unresolved. Here, Peter Haining does much to prove that Sweeney Todd did exist, and did indeed own a barber’s shop in Fleet Street. He also presents the original nineteenth-century novel by Frederick Hazleton, which will delight not only believers in the Sweeney Todd saga but those avid readers and collectors of the Victorian Penny Dreadful. The contemporary illustrations add to the relish.

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