George Borrow(1803–1881) was an English novel and travel writer. He was educated at Edinburgh High School and at Norwich Grammar School. He was articled to a solicitor but after editing Celebrated Trials, and Remarkable Cases of Criminal Jurisprudence (1825) spent several years traveling through Europe and learning languages. Between 1833 and 1840 Borrow acted as an agent for the British and Foreign Bible Society, visiting Russia, the Iberian Peninsula, and North Africa. He married in 1840 and settled in East Anglia. Borrow’s precocious linguistic skills as a youth made him a protege of the Norwich-born scholar William Taylor, whom he depicted in his autobiographical novel Lavengro (1851) as an advocate of German Romantic literature. In 1844 he journeyed again to Europe and Asia. Wild Wales (1862) is the most famous result of his later British walking tours. His books, often characterized by a mixture of fact and fiction and by a fascination with outsiders and their language, also include The Zincali, or An Account of the Gypsies in Spain or The Journeys, Adventures, and Imprisonments of an Englishman, in an Attempt to circulate the Scriptures in the Peninsula (1841), The Bible in Spain (1843), Lavengro: The Scholar, the Gypsy, the Priest (1851), and its sequel The Romany Rye (1857).
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