Lewes was born in London on 18 April 1817; the illegitimate son of the minor poet John Lee Lewes and Elizabeth Ashweek and grandson of the famous comic actor Charles Lee Lewes. He had two elder brothers by his parents' extramarital union and four half siblings from John Lee Lewes' marriage to Elizabeth Pownell. Lewes was aware neither of his own illegitimacy nor of his “natural” father's legitimate family in Liverpool that had been abandoned in 1811. He had the false impression that John Lee Lewes had died when he was two, whereas he had in fact migrated to Bermuda. Lewes, and his brothers Edgar James and Edward Charles, grew up with their mother Elizabeth Ashweek and much-disliked stepfather John Gurens Willim following their marriage in 1823.

Lewes' family was financially

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Citation: Hadjiafxendi, Kyriaki. "George Henry Lewes". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 17 June 2003 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=2715, accessed 11 December 2023.]

2715 George Henry Lewes 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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