- Category : Writers-Critic
- Type : MEG
- Profile : 5/1 - Heretical / Investigator
- Definition : Split - Small (56)
- Incarnation Cross : LAX Dominion 1
Russian-Jewish writer and translator who spent his later life in exile.
Cournos's first language was Yiddish; he studied Russian, German, and Hebrew with a tutor at home. His family emigrated to Philadelphia, USA, when he was ten years old, and his primary language became English. In June 1912, he moved to London, England, where he freelanced as an interviewer and critic for both UK and US publications and began his literary career as a poet and, later, novelist. He later emigrated to the USA, where he spent the rest of his life.
He was one of the Imagist poets, but is better known for his novels, short stories, essays and criticism, and as a translator of Russian literature. He used the pseudonym John Courtney. He also wrote for The Philadelphia Record under the pseudonym "Gorky."
Later in life he married Helen Kestner (1893–1960), who was also an author, under the pseudonym Sybil Norton. However, he is probably best known for his unhappy affair with Dorothy L. Sayers, fictionalized by Sayers in the detective book Strong Poison (1930) and by Cournos himself in The Devil Is an English Gentleman (1932).
Cournos died on 27 August 1966 in New York City.