Local Author Publishes New Book On ‘The Emperor’ Of Scilly

Richard Larn

Richard Larn

A new book on the life and times of the man who transformed Tresco and started universal education in Scilly has gone on sale.

Author Richard Larn has published research he undertook for his 2012 slide shows on Augustus John Smith.

Unlike many powerful Victorian landowners, Richard’s book reveals ‘the Emperor’ was a generous, caring man who left a year’s salary to staff in his will.  He says it’s remarkable that someone from that era would do such a thing.

Smith never married and had relationships with a number of islands’ women. It was believed that he fathered three children but this week Richard has uncovered the birth certificate of a fourth son.

Unlike his contemporaries, the Emperor provided well for his girlfriends and children and Richard says Smith didn’t abuse his power.

The new book, Augustus John Smith – The Emperor and King of Scilly by Richard and Bridget Larn is on sale now.