Lord George Gordon Byron (1788-1824) was as famous in his lifetime for his personality cult as for his poetry. He created the concept of the "Byronic hero" - a bold, proud, rebellious, though at times melancholy, young man, brooding on some mysterious, unforgivable event in his past. Byron's influence on European poetry, music, novel, opera, and painting has been immense and prolonged, although the poet was widely condemned on moral grounds by his contemporaries.
He was the only English poet of his age to achieve a European reputation and to exert a significant influence on the Romantic movement - Alfred de Musset was his disciple in France, Aleksandr Pushkin in Russia, Heinrich Heine in Germany, Adam Mickiewicz in Poland. His poetry inspired musical compositions by Hector Berlioz, Robert Schumann, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky; operas by Gaetano Donizetti and Giuseppe Verdi; and paintings by J. M. W. Turner and Eugène Delacroix. His spirit animated liberal revolutionary movements: the Italian patriot Giuseppe Mazzini associated Byron with the eternal struggle of the oppressed to be free.