Alexander Pope was born in Plough Court, off Lombard Street, in the heart of the City of London on 21 May 1688. He was the only child of elderly, well-off, Roman Catholic parents (his mother was 45 when he was born) to whom he remained closely devoted throughout his life. His father had been a successful linen merchant for almost twenty years prior to his son's birth, but was forced to retire in 1688, owing to the anti-Catholic laws passed after the arrival of William III. In the same year an Act of Parliament came into force prohibiting Catholics from living within ten miles of the City of London. Although the family went on living in Lombard Street for another five years, continuing anti-Catholic legislation, given renewed prominence from royal proclamations in 1696, 1715 and 1744, was…

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Citation: Gordon, Ian. "Alexander Pope". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 03 March 2002 [, accessed 30 May 2024.]

5169 Alexander Pope 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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