1909 - 1914


Robert attended several preparatory schools, and from the last of these he won a scholarship to Charterhouse, where he...

...was a boader the remaining five years of his schooling (1909-1914). Charterhouse provided him with an excellent classical education, but he never adjusted to the public-school spirit, and his peers bullied him for his German ancestry and for having a German middle name. The pressure led Graves to write poetry, and this boosted his self-confidence, allowing him to survive the hostile atmosphere. He joined the school Poetry Society and published poems in The Carthusian, the school magazine. Nevertheless, he also took up boxing as a means of intimidating the school bullies, and won several cups

At Charterhouse Robert became a close friend of his English teacher, George Mallory, the climber who died on Mount Everest in 1924. Mallory acquainted him with contemporary poetry and introduced him to Edward Marsh, private secretary to Winston Churchill and editor of Georgian Poetry. Marsh later published Robert s poems in his magazine. In his last year at school, Mallory invited Robert to climb with him and a group of top-class climbers in Snowdonia. These early contacts gave him a self assurance that remained with him until the end. He left Charterhouse with a Classical Exhibition for St. John s College, Oxford.

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