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Dame Agatha Christie's Biography

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Agatha Christie, who was most famous for writing detective stories, was born on 15 September 1890 in Torquay, England.

Even though she had no formal schooling, Agatha Christie had a poem published by a local paper when she was just 11.

At 16, she went to Paris to study music. However, she returned to England and in 1914 she married Archibald Christie, later Colonel Christie, who was just about to join the Royal Flying Corps. Her maiden name had been Miller.

Agatha Christie started writing fiction and her first published book was The Mysterious Affair at Styles. Numerous other books followed, many featuring the detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple.

In December 1926, there was a curious episode where Agatha Christie went missing. She had gone to Harrogate, and stayed in a hotel under the name Miss Neele, but could not remember why or how she had done so.

Agatha Christie divorced Colonel Christie in 1928, and, in 1930, she married Sir Max Mallowan.

As well as her detective stories, Agatha Christie also wrote plays like the long-running The Mousetrap, although this was initially written as a radio sketch called Three Blind Mice, as well as romantic fiction under the name Mary Westmacott.

Agatha Christie published 83 books which sold around 300 million copies. Christie's work has been translated into more languages than Shakespeare. The last Miss Marple book, Sleeping Murder, was published after Agatha Christie's death as was her autobiography.

Agatha Christie was made a Dame in 1971. She died on 12 January 1976.

The BBC has audio interviews with Agatha Christie.

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