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Edward Lear

A memorial stone to Edward Lear, writer, artist and ornithologist, was unveiled in Poets' Corner Westminster Abbey on 6th June 1988 by Sir Hugh Casson. It adjoins memorials to Anthony Trollope and D.H.Lawrence. The insert of the profile of Lear is in brown on a white circular background. The inscription reads:

"EDWARD LEAR 1812-1888 Painter and Poet Buried in San Remo"

He was born in May 1812 in London, a son of Jeremiah Lear and his wife Ann (Skerrett). Educated at home by his sisters he then became an artist and his first illustrations were in a book about birds. Later he lived in Rome and turned to landscape painting. In 1846 he published A Book of Nonsense. His is best known today for his limericks and nonsense poems such as The Owl and the Pussy-Cat. He was a resident of San Remo and died there 29th January 1888.

A bi-centenary wreath laying was held in the Abbey on 12 May 2012

Further reading

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004


12th May 1812


29th January 1888


6th June 1988


Artist; writer


South Transept; Poets' Corner

Memorial Type


Material Type


Edward Lear
Edward Lear memorial

© The Dean and Chapter of Westminster

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

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At different times of the day, or in different seasons, the light falling in the Abbey will light up something that you have walked past a million times and never seen before.


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