HAPPY BIRTHDAY – George Orwell, born 25 June 1903
“In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
George Orwell was actually Eric Arthur Blair and he was born in India, but was only one when his family, which he described as “lower-upper-middle-class” returned to England. There had once been family wealth, but by the time Eric was born most of it had gone. Throughout his life he experienced considerable poverty and hardship, memorably described in Down and Out in Paris and London, and he tried his hand at many jobs – teaching, bookselling, even as a policeman.
As a writer he was hugely influential. He is best known for his dystopian novels Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm, but he also wrote literary criticism, other fiction, poetry and journalism.
He died from TB at the age of 46, and his gravestone makes no mention of the name ‘George Orwell’ (inspired by the Orwell River) which is now so famous.
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