Bulwer-Lytton, Edward Sir

Bulwer-Lytton, Edward Sir

Edward Bulwer-Lytton Sir

1803 - 1873

Name Variant(s): Lord Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Lytton,

Edward Bulwer-Lytton and his son, Robert Bulwer-Lytton (under the pseudonym Owen Meredith), each contributed poetry to the Arthurian canon. They have rather complicated names and titles - here is the first paragraph of his current entry in the online Encyclopaedia Britannica:

Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, in full Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton of Knebworth . . . British politician, poet, and critic, chiefly remembered, however, as a prolific novelist. His books, though dated, remain immensely readable, and his experiences lend his work an unusual historical interest.

When Edward Bulwer was 4, his father died. A few years later, his mother moved him and his sister to her family’s estate, Knebworth. Edward became Baron of Knebworth in 1838, and, when his mother died in 1843, he fulfulled the stipulation of her will to add “Lytton” to his name. In the 1875 edition of King Arthur that we use here, the author is "The Right Hon. Lord Lytton." 

Contemporaries universally considered Bulwer-Lytton a dandy, which is verified in his future wife's description of him at their first meeting in 1825: "His cobweb cambric shirt-front was a triumph of lace and embroidery, a combination never seen in this country till six or seven years later, except on babies' frocks. ... His hair, which was really golden, glitteringly golden, and abundant, he wore literally in long ringlets, that almost reached his shoulders" (quoted in Cobbold, 149). They had two children, a daughter who died of typhoid at age 19 and a son (see above). Their family life was chaotic and

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