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Alan Coren (1938–2007) by Terry O'Neill, 1990 Getty Images

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Coren, Alan (1938–2007), humorous writer, was born on 27 June 1938 at 2 Queensdown Road, Hackney, London, the son of Samuel Coren, builder and plumber, and his wife, Martha, née Coren, hairdresser. At the time of his birth registration his parents lived at ...

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Gerard Hoffnung (1925–1959) by Peter Keen, late 1950s © Peter Keen; collection National Portrait Gallery, London

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Hoffnung, Gerard [formerly Gerhardt] (1925–1959), cartoonist and musical humorist, was born in Grünewald, Berlin, on 22 March 1925, the only child of German-Jewish parents, Ludwig Hoffnung, a wealthy grain merchant, and his wife, Hilde, a widow, whose first husband, Schnabel, was killed in the First World War. His mother was a keen amateur musician and artist who encouraged his artistic talents. From his earliest years he was interested in the macabre—fairy tales, practical jokes, and the comic drawings of the famous German illustrators and caricaturists....

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Mikes, George (1912–1987), writer and humorist, was born György Mikes on 15 February 1912 in Siklós, Hungary, the son of Alfred Mikes, lawyer, and his wife, Margit, née Gál. During the First World War the family moved to Pécs, where Alfred Mikes worked in a military court; they returned to ...