Kahlil Gibran was born on 6th January, 1883, in the mountainous area of Northern Lebanon. He had a half-brother six years older than him and two younger sisters. When Gibran was eight years old, his father was imprisoned for tax evasion which resulted in the Gibans' property being confiscated. As a result, the family was homeless and lived with relatives for a while before his mother, a strong-willed woman, decided to emigrate to the US to seek a better life. There they settled in Boston's South End.
Although originally placed in an ungraded class where immigrant children had to learn English from scratch, Gibran soon caught the eye of his teachers with his sketches and drawings, which eventually led to him being supported by an artistic benefactor, Fred Holland Day, which allowed Gibran to develop his talents to become a high-profile philosophical essayist, novelist, mystical poet and artist.
Gibran died of liver disease, possibly caused by alcoholism, in New York on 10th April, 1931. His body was shipped back to Lebanon where, alongside his tomb in his hometown, The Gibran Museum was later established. In his will he left all royalties from his books to his native village.
Him most famous work and the one that he will always be remembered for was The Prophet, a book of 26 poetic essays originally published in 1923 and since translated into over 20 languages. The book became a counterculture guide in the 1960s and has remained a favourite of spiritual and New Age communities ever since.