Edgar Prestage was Britain's first Professor of Portuguese. He was born in Upper Brook Street, Manchester and became the first Lecturer in Portuguese at any higher education institution outside the Portuguese- speaking world when he was appointed as Special Lecturer in Portuguese Literature at Owens College, Manchester, the forerunner of the University of Manchester. Prestage lived for many years in Bowdon, Cheshire and practised as a solicitor in his father's firm in Princess Street, Manchester.
His interest in Portuguese was awakened at school, at Radley College, in Oxfordshire. Never reluctant to approach the famous men of his day, he corresponded with Sir Richard Burton and a number of celebrated Portuguese writers, including Teófilo Braga and Batalha Reis. In 1909 and 1914, before emigrating to Portugal he sold much of his library to the John Rylands Library, Manchester, where it remains today. In 1908 he married Cristina, the neurotic daughter of the mulatto Brazilian poet, Gonçalves Crespo and his wife, the famous literary critic, Maria Amália Vaz de Carvalho. Cristina committed suicide in 1918 and, ultimately, Prestage returned to England, where he became the country's first Professor of Portuguese, at King's College, London.
Deiró lived at various addresses in south Manchester but the grandest was Fair Oak, a mansion on Palatine Road, West Disbury. Today the building is a hall of residence of the Manchester Metropolitan University, having formerly been the Needham Hall of Residence of the Victoria University of Manchester. Deiro went spectacularly bankrupt in 1911, owing a sum variously quoted as £120,000 and £170,000 in the reports which appeared in The Times and elsewhere. At this peak, Deiró had been a member of fashionable London clubs and even when he died, his address, Mayfair Chambers, did not suggest total penury. Much of his fine Portuguese furniture was bought up by his brother-in-law, Edward Hulton the Younger, the celebrated newspaper publisher. Deiró had married Theresa Hulton in 1894 but the couple separated after producing a son and daughter. Edward Hulton, the Elder, who lived in Sale, was the founder of The Sporting Chronicle and The News Chronicle.