George Eliot, born Mary Ann Evans on November 22, 1819 in Warwickshire, England, was an English author (BBC). Believing people would not take her writing seriously if they knew she was a woman, Evans wrote under the pseudonym George Eliot for most of her career (George Eliot). For four year growing up, Eliot attended Mrs. Wallington’s School at Nuneaton (BBC). There, she became extremely pious, attending church regularly (BBC). Upon her mother’s death in 1836, Eliot moved to Coventry, England to live with her father (BBC). In Coventry, Eliot began to criticize the church, and she stopped going (George Eliot). When her father died in 1849, Eliot decided to travel Europe, reading extensively (George Eliot). Eventually settling in London, Eliot began writing for The Westminster Review, and came into a serious relationship with George Henry Lewes, a married man (BBC). Eliot wrote her novels while living in London, as well (George Eliot). She lived with Lewes until his death in 1878, and afterwards, she married her longtime friend John Cross, who was 20 years younger than her. Eliot died on December 22, 1880 in London (BBC).
Following her death, many did not consider George Eliot’s work exceptional. More recently, Eliot is regarded as one of the best authors ever, and her book Middlemarch is widely regarded as one of, if not the best, books in the English language (Mead, The New Yorker). Some have called Eliot "a precursor of Sigmund Freud" for her in depth psychoanalysis of her characters (Mead, The Telegraph). George Eliot’s realism is seen as hugely influential to literature (George Eliot). Eliot was a groundbreaking writer, and she is now seen as a major figure in English writing.