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The life of escape artist, fortune-teller, author and raconteur Ironfoot Jack, aka Jack Rudolph Neave (1881-1959), the self-styled King of the Bohemians in London's Soho. I became acquainted with gipsies, with show people, with buskers, with people who entertained the public by performing in the city, on fair grounds and market places...and with a variety of fiddles -that is, some dubious methods of obtaining the means of life. I became a member of this fraternity. -from The Surrender of Silence Escape artist, fortune-teller, author, and raconteur Ironfoot Jack, aka Jack Rudolph Neave (1881-1959), the self-styled King of the Bohemians, was a well-known Soho character in pre- and postwar London. His rich and enthralling story of a lifestyle now gone forever was dictated as his portrait was being painted by the artist Timothy Whidborne in 1956. It was then entrusted to a Soho acquaintance, the author Colin Wilson whose first book The Outsider, had been a success in the same year. Despite his efforts, Wilson failed to find a publisher and, after his death, the manuscript was discovered among his papers by his bibliographer Colin Stanley, who assembled the text, which is accompanied by a contextual introduction by cultural historian Phil Baker. Jack wrote that The Surrender of Silence was the outcome of years of struggle to survive; of solving the problem of existence by various and curious methods... Most of the people I am talking about led a precarious life and obtained their livelihood from day to day.... They worked to live; they did not live to work. This Strange Attractor Press edition is the first publication of this legendary work.