As we remember the great author George Orwell on the day of his passing, we can’t help but marvel over his contribution not just as a writer of great artistic talent, but as an upstanding citizen of the world who wrote to the people and for the people, and stood up against The Man! So, here’s a list of facts about him that you may have not known, but definitely should!
1. man of many identities
image via writing as i please
That’s right, the George we know and love, was born as Eric Arthur Blair. And he was known as that until he was in Paris and had published his first book, Down and Out in Paris and London, in 1933, channeling his alias George Orwell.
2. He was born in india
image via the guardian
Although Orwell is a British citizen, he was actually born in Motihari, Bihar, British India, which is now present day East Champaran, Bihar, India — who would’ve thought, right? You can see baby Orwell with his Indian nanny in the picture above.
3. he knew a real life muriel
image via whizzpast
4. he had very smart teachers
image via intellectual takeout
While Orwell was attending a fancy prep school in England, he was taught French by the Brave New World author, Aldous Huxley! Talk about smart minds seeking out each other!
5. man of many words
image via london historians’ blog
Orwell wrote in a 1944 newspaper column, “In my life I have learned seven foreign languages, including two dead ones, and out of those seven I retain only one, and that not brilliantly.” While in school, he learned French from Aldous Huxley, who taught at Orwell’s boarding school, and ultimately became fluent in French, and eventually studied Latin, Greek, Spanish, and Burmese, to name a few!
6. HE contracted a deadly disease
image via wikipedia
From 1922 to 1927, Orwell lived in Burma, present day Myanmar, serving as a police officer with the Indian Police. But this ended due to his contracting dengue fever, which is spread through mosquitoes! Recovering from his illness, Orwell figured he’d spent enough of his life as a police officer and turned to a writing career instead — great thinking!
Not only was George Orwell a passionate and talented writer, he was also a person who strongly believed in and advocated for justice everywhere. These little facts about him also make us realize that he was also a very interesting man with a peculiar life. Although he may not be with us anymore, it’s safe to say that his work will continue to influence and impact the world for a very, very long time.
featured image via literary hub
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