David Herbert Lawrence was born into a miner’s family in 1885 in Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, the fourth of five children. After attending Beauvale Board School he won a scholarship to Nottingham High School. He trained as a teacher, and taught in Croydon until 1911, when his career was ended by serious illness.
His beloved mother died in 1911, just before the publication of his first novel The White Peacock. In 1912 Lawrence eloped to Germany with Frieda Weekley, the wife of Professor Ernest Weekley. They were married in 1914 in Kensington. Confined to England during the war years, the Lawrences spent much of their time in Cornwall. In 1919 they embarked on a period of extensive travelling throughout Europe, and then further afield to Ceylon, Australia, Mexico and New Mexico.
His health continued to deteriorate and Lawrence returned to Europe with Frieda in 1925. During his last years Lawrence spent much of his time in Italy and Switzerland, making only brief visits to England, the last in 1926. He died on 2 March 1930 at Vence in the south of France.
Lawrence was a prolific writer of poetry, novels, short stories, plays, essays and criticism. His works are often autobiographical and the experiences of his early years in Nottinghamshire continued to exert a profound influence throughout his life.