Hannah Chaplin

Hannah Chaplin

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Hannah Chaplin

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Hannah Chaplin (August 11, 1865 – August 28, 1928) was the mother of Charlie Chaplin.

She was born Hannah Harriet Pedlingham Hill in Camden Street, Walworth, London, the daughter of Mary Ann (née Terry) and Charles Frederick Hill. She became a Music Hall entertainer and used the stage name 'Lily Harley'.

On March 16, 1885, she gave birth to Sydney John Hill, later Sydney Chaplin. Later that year, on June 22, she married Charles Spencer Chaplin, a fellow Music Hall entertainer. Their son Charles was born in 1889.

She gave birth to George Wheeler Dryden on August 31, 1892 in London, son of music hall entertainer Leo Dryden. George was therefore the half brother of Charles and Sydney Chaplin. As a result of her adulterous relationship with Dryden, Hannah and Charles Chaplin, Sr. separated soon after George's birth. Hannah became responsible for taking care of Charlie and his older brother Sydney, as George went to live with his father.

It was when Hannah's voice failed during a performance at 'The Canteen', an Army theatre at Aldershot in Hampshire in January 1894, that the young Charlie Chaplin, at the age of four, got his first taste of performing, when he went on as an unplanned replacement for his mother. This event was portrayed in the 1992 film Chaplin.

She became increasingly mentally ill...
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