D.H. Lawrence Research Centre


David Herbert Lawrence was born on 11 September 1885 at what is now 8a Victoria Street, Eastwood, near Nottingham, the fourth of the five children of Arthur John Lawrence (1846-1924) and his wife Lydia (1851-1910).

Arthur - like his three brothers - was a coal-miner; he worked from the age of 10 until he was 66. He was very much at home in the small mining town, and widely regarded as an excellent workman and cheerful companion.


Family group
(Lawrence Collection)

Lawrence's mother, Lydia, was second daughter of Robert Beardsall and his wife Lydia Newton of Sneinton; originally lower middle-class, the Beardsalls had suffered financial disaster in the 1860s and Lydia - in spite of attempts to work as a pupil-teacher - had been forced into employment as a sweated home-worker in the lace industry. But she had had more education than her husband, and passed on to at least two of her sons and both of her daughters an enduring love of books, a religious faith and a commitment to self-improvement, as well as a profound desire to move out of the working class in which she felt herself trapped.

© Professor John Worthen, 2005.

An extended biography by John Worthen is available on the Lawrence Resources website.


Next chapter: Early Years

Dr Andrew Harrison

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