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Sandoz, Maurice

Entry updated 21 May 2019. Tagged: Author.

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(1892-1958) Swiss author and composer who earned a PhD in chemistry but devoted himself to the arts. His fiction often included elements of Horror and sometimes bordered on the fantastic and surreal (see Fantastika). Of primary interest is his novel The Maze (1945), evidently based on the legend of a monstrous heir of Scotland's Bowes-Lyon family kept hidden in a secret room in Glamis Castle. The novel, set in the fictitious Craven's Castle, is superficially a Gothic SF mystery, and posits the hidden heir as a 175-year-old Mutant whose embryonic development was arrested at the amphibian stage. It was filmed by William Cameron Menzies as The Maze (1953). Sandoz's later The House Without Windows (1950) is a philosophical novel which features a house with such "futuristic" innovations as an elevator, diffuse lighting, and hidden heating in pre-World War One Switzerland. Fantastic Memories (coll 1944) and On the Verge (coll 1950) are collections containing bizarre stories, often with elements of Humour and horror. All these volumes were illustrated by Salvador Dalí (1904-1989).

Sandoz also wrote the play Spring-heeled Jack, or The Terror of London (written 1928), based on a London legend related in the penny dreadfuls; this was later filmed as The Curse of the Wraydons (1946; vt Strangler's Morgue) directed by Victor M Gover, and again as the made-for-television Spring-Heeled Jack (1950). [LW]

Maurice-Yves Sandoz

born Basel, Switzerland: 2 April 1892

died Lausanne, Switzerland: 5 June 1958

works (selected)

  • The Maze (Garden City, New York: Doubleday, Doran and Company, 1945) [illus/Salvador Dalí: hb/]
  • The House Without Windows (London: William Campion, 1950) [illus/Salvador Dalí: hb/]


  • Fantastic Memories (Garden City, New York: Doubleday, Doran and Company, 1944) [coll: illus/Salvador Dalí: hb/]
  • On the Verge (Garden City, New York: Doubleday, Doran and Company, 1950) [coll: illus/Salvador Dalí: hb/]


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