George Herbert biography :
George Herbert was born on 3rd April
1593 in Montgomery, Wales to Richard and Magdalen
Newport Herbert. He and his nine siblings were
raised solely by their mother after the death of
Richard Herbert in 1596.
George Herbert’s family was wealthy, intellectual
and had a fondness for the arts. His mother was the
patron of John Donne, and other poets. His brother,
Edward, was also a poet and a philosopher. He was
later knighted and called “Lord Herbert of Chirbury”
George Herbert studied at Westminster School and
later on, at the Trinity College in Cambridge. He
composed his first sonnets in 1610 and sent these to
his mother. In 1620, Herbert was appointed the
“Public Orator” of Cambridge. He held that post with
distinction until 1628.
George Herbert was ordained an Anglican Priest in
the year 1630 and became a rector at Bemerton near
Salisbury. He composed his immortal poems exploring
and celebrating God’s love, during the time he was a
On March 1, 1633, George Herbert passed away. Before
he died, he gave Nicholas Ferrar, founder of an
Anglican religious community at Little Gidding, the
manuscript of The Temple. He asked Ferrar to publish
the poems only if these would “turn to the advantage
of any dejected poor soul”, else have these poems
burned. Little did George Herbert know that his
works would have a profound impact on his readers.
By 1680, barely 50 years after his death, The Temple
had gone through as much as a dozen printings.