Huxley's mother was a niece of poet and essayist Matthew Arnold, who expressed the moral struggles of the modern age and the retreat of a religion-based culture. Matthew's father, Thomas Arnold, head of Rugby School, had presided with earnest devotion over the theory and practice of education in his time. Thus Aldous grew up in an atmosphere in which thought on science, religion, and education informed and even dominated family life. Living up to the expectations of "Grandpater," as T. H. Huxley was known in his family, constituted a full-time, exhausting job for the children — Aldous included. Academic and professional brilliance was expected as a matter of course, with no excuses allowed. A family tendency toward depression compounded by this pressure may have contributed to the suicide of Trevenan, Aldous' elder brother. At sixteen, the sudden onset of
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