Lesser Known Facts About Dr. Seuss

By | May 10, 2019

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Dr. Seuss. Source: (hellogiggles.com)

It seems every Christmas there is a new film adaptation of How the Grinch Stole Christmas and we have one person to thank for that: a famous children’s author by the name of Dr. Seuss. While most people will recognize him as the author of popular children’s books such as The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham, there are a few details about the man that are not common knowledge.

His last name wasn’t Seuss

This first one may not be common knowledge but could easily be guessed. After all, many writers choose to publish under pseudonyms for various reasons. What is not so easy to guess is the fact that Seuss was actually his middle name as well as his mother’s maiden name. He was born on March 2, 1904, in Springfield, Massachusetts, as Theodor Seuss Geisel. His parents were Theodor Robert Geisel and Henrietta Seuss Geisel. His mother was the daughter of Bavarian immigrants and the surname Seuss was actually pronounced as Zoice rather than Soose, as it is pronounced today.

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Dartmouth College. Source: (Wikimedia Commons)

He wasn’t a Doctor

While most people likely guessed he wasn’t a medical doctor, they may have assumed that he at least had a Ph.D. in English, which would have still earned him the title of “Dr.” But they would have assumed wrong. At least, they would be wrong in the sense that Dr. Seuss did not complete his post-graduate studies. He intended to become a professor and did attend Oxford from 1925 to 1926 after graduating from Dartmouth College. However, he spent more time doodling than taking notes and, following the advice of his future wife, Helen Palmer, he dropped out of Oxford to become a cartoonist. He did, however, receive an honorary doctorate from Dartmouth in 1955.