Scottish author A J Cronin was born - On this day in history


19 July 2019
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Scottish author A J Cronin was born on 19 July 1896.

A J Cronin, author of The Keys of the Kingdom and creator of the character Dr Finlay, was born on 19 July 1896 in Cardross. Cronin initially followed his mother into the medical profession (she was Scotland's first female public health inspector) and he studied medicine at the University of Glasgow before becoming a ship's surgeon, later becoming Britain's Medical Inspector for Mines.

Cronin's writing career began when he was given six month's bed rest for a digestive complaint. He used the time to write the novel Hatter's Castle, never returning to medical practice again. His best known character is probably Dr Finlay, who was used as the inspiration for the TV and radio series Dr Finlay's Casebook.