Herbert George Wells (21 September 1866 – 13 August 1946) was an English author, now best known for his work in the science fiction genre. He was also a prolific writer in many other genres, including contemporary novels, history, politics and social commentary, even writing text books. Together with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback, Wells has been referred to as "The Father of Science Fiction".
Wells was an outspoken socialist and sympathetic to pacifist views, although he supported the First World War once it was under way, and his later works became increasingly political and didactic. His middle-period novels (1900–1920) were less science-fictional; they covered lower-middle class life (The History of Mr Polly) and the "New Woman" and the Suffragettes (Ann Veronica).
Herbert George Wells was born at Atlas House, 47 High Street, Bromley, in the county of Kent, a small market town, on 21 September 1866. Called "Bertie" in the family, he was the fourth and last child of Joseph Wells (a former domestic gardener, and at the time a shopkeeper and professional cricketer) and his wife Sarah Neal (a former domestic servant). The family was of the impoverished lower middle class. An inheritance had allowed the family to acquire a shop in which they sold china and sporting goods, although it failed to prosper: the stock was old and worn out, and the location was poor. Joseph Wells managed to earn a meagre income, but little of it came from the shop; Joseph received an unsteady amount of money from playing professional cricket for the Kent county team. Payment for skilled bowlers and batsmen came from voluntary donations afterwards, or from small payments from the clubs where matches were played.