Leaf, Walter (1852–1927)
Classical scholar, banker, and pioneer of psychical research
in Britain. He was born November 28, 1852, in London, England,
and was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge (B.A.,
1874; M.A., 1877). Leaf became a successful banker and retained
an amateur interest in classical studies. His banking
leadership was acknowledged by his being elected president of
the Institute of Bankers (1919–21) and later president of the
International Chambers of Commerce (1924–26). He was also
president of the Hellenic Society (1914–19), president of the
Classical Association (1921), and an honorary fellow of Trinity
College, Cambridge.
Leaf was also an active member of the Society for Psychical
Research (SPR), London, and served a tenure on the council
(1889–1902). He took part in the SPR sittings with the medium
Leonora Piper in 1889–90 and frequently contributed to the
Journal and the Proceedings of the SPR. He died March 8, 1927.
Berger, Arthur S., and Joyce Berger. The Encyclopedia of
Parapsychology and Psychical Research. New York Paragon
House, 1991.
Pleasants, Helene, ed. Biographical Dictionary of Parapsychology.
New York Helix Press, 1964.

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