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Jan 30

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January 30: Walter Savage Landor (1775)

It was on this date, January 30, 1775, that English satirist and writer Walter Savage Landor was born in Ipsley Court, Warwick, the son of a doctor who married a woman of wealth. A bit of an unruly youth, Landor was removed from Rugby for insolence and suspended from Trinity College, Oxford, for firing off a shotgun in his rooms. Landor’s unrestrained personality got him sued for libel, so he moved to Italy with his wife and, in 1824, published his Imaginary Conversations of Literary Men and Statesmen (1824-29). This work, with its criticism of his host country, plus a charge of insulting the police, got Landor threatened with expulsion from Florence. He returned to England and published Pericles and Aspasia (1836), a series of imaginary letters recreating Athens and its civilization through the lives of the distinguished Greek statesman and the most learned woman of the Greek world – both of them advanced skeptics.

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Originally published January 2003 by Ronald Bruce Meyer.

About the author

Ronald Bruce Meyer

Freethought Almanac was created by Ronald Bruce Meyer, in collaboration with freethoughtradio.com, in March 2003. What started with a brief notice on the birthday of Albert Einstein, grew into almost 250,000 words on not only biography but history, philosophy, theology and politics — one day at a time. Freethought Almanac looks at these daily subjects from a godless point of view, that is, a point of view that is based not on fantasies, delusions or wishful thinking, but a view that is evidence-based.

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