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Yorick Club

The Yorick Club was an early expression of the bohemian strand of the 1860s literary world. Gatherings of literary men, meeting first in F.W. Haddon's and Marcus Clarke's rooms, and later at Nissen's Café, led to a more formal assembly (in 1868). The founders, mainly contributors to the Argus and the Australasian, modelled their club upon the Savage Club, London. Candidates had to demonstrate a professional interest in literature, visual arts or science. Marcus Clarke wanted to call the Club the Golgotha but the more acceptable Yorick was preferred. Operating on a small budget, the Club was twice wound up and reconstructed during the 1890s. Its membership remained for many years the most varied and mixed of any Melbourne club. By the 1960s the literary-artistic requirements had been relaxed but the struggle to survive continued, until the Yorick amalgamated with the Savage Club in 1966.

Paul De Serville

Bell, George (ed.), The Yorick Club: Its origin and development: May 1868 to December 1910, with contributions by Thomas Carrington and D. Watterston, Atlas Press, Melbourne, 1911. Details