Lord Byron’s birthday
Originally shared by Ed Pearce
The English romantic poet Lord Byron (birth name George Gordon) was born on January 22, 1788 at 24 Holles Street, London.
Lord Byron was the 6th Baron Byron. He was addressed as The Right Honourable Lord Byron by strangers and as Byron (the title, not the name) by friends. No one ever called him George after he became Byron, not even his mother.
His father, Captain John „Mad Jack” Byron died when he was three, having spent all his inherited fortune. Byron was bought up by his mother, Catherine Gordon of Gight, an impetuous, volatile Scot and a Calvinist nurse in Aberdeen. A harsh and dependent parent, Catherine was just the wrong sort of person to raise a sensitive child, clinging to him one moment, and the next denouncing Byron as a „lame brat,” because of a club foot.
Byron was pronounced limp due to both his achilles tendons being deformed and a wrongly shaped right foot which he tried to disguise. He was forced to undergo painful and unsuccessful medical treatments throughout his childhood. Always deeply sensitive about his deformity, he finally received adequate medical care in his teens which corrected the problem.
His over-protective mother kept George separated from his peers and his elder half-sister, Augusta.
He claimed to have read more than 4,000 novels before the age of 15.
Byron was educated at a local strict Calvinist Aberdeen Grammar school between 1794 to 1798. Then Dr. Glennie’s School, Dulwich and Harrow. At Harrow, he was popular and outgoing, though by his own admission he did very little schoolwork.
Byron went on to Trinity College, Cambridge University in 1805 where he read much literature but cared little for their subjects. A strange and bellicose student. He left, without a degree and deeply in debt, in 1807 to pursue an extravagant lifestyle in London.
In 1798 Byron inherited a half ruined estate, Newstead Abbey, worth £140,000 and a moderate income from his Great Uncle.