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Edward Verrall Lucas (1868-1938) was a prolific and wide-ranging journalist, becoming well- known through his contributions to Punch. Lucas was encouraged at Punch by Owen Seaman, being elected to the ‘Table’ in 1904, and two years later deputising for Seaman when he became editor. In turn, he encouraged A A Milne who, as a young writer, became Seaman’s assistant later in 1906.
Fifteen years later, in 1921, Lucas offered similar encouragement to E H Shepard, when he was elected to the Punch Table. At that time, he was at his most influential, not only as deputy editor of Punch, but as a director, then chairman, of the publishing house of Methuen.
Lucas continued to encourage Milne and Shepard after he had left the staff of Punch, and brought them together for a series of illustrated children’s poems that first appeared in Punch in 1924, and were collected as When We Were Very Young.