Cyril Edward Parsons was the son of Edward Parsons and his wife Emma, born Bartlett. He was a Fellow of the Geological Society of London (FGS). In 1897 he presented a paper to the Federated Institution of Mining Engineers (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) on "The deposit at the Mill Close Lead-Mine, Darley Dale, Matlock" [in Derbyshire, England], which was published in the institution's Transactions. By 1899 he was working in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), for in that year he wrote "Notes on the geological features of Mashonaland" for inclusion in a publication by the British South Africa Company, Information as to mining in Rhodesia... (London, 1899-1900, Vol. 1, pp. 207-208). He became a member of the Rhodesia Scientific Association in 1902, and was still listed as a member in 1906. During these years he delivered two papers before the association in Bulawayo, both of which were published in its Proceedings: "Notes on a geological section from Gwelo [now Gweru] to the Zambesi River" (September 1903, Vol. 4, pp. 48-52), and "Geological notes in Rhodesia" (December 1905, Vol. 5, pp. 113-117). Later he published a brief description of "The Shamva Mines, Rhodesia" (Bulletin of the Institution of Mining and Metallurgy, 1924).
In 1908 Parsons married Violet Joan Emma Fletcher. They had four children.