Charles W. Leadbeater

 (1854-1934)

Charles W. Leadbeater

Charles W. Leadbeater

British clergyman, occultist, and author who played a prominent part in the Theosophical Society. Leadbeater was born February 16, 1854. While a curate in the Church of England in Hampshire, he became interested in Theosophy and eventually left the Church. In 1884 he moved to Adyar, the headquarters of the Theosophical Society near Madras, India. He devoted himself to the cause of Theosophy and the related Liberal Catholic Church for the rest of his life.

He traveled in Ceylon with Henry S. Olcott, one of the founders of Theosophy, and publicly professed himself to be a Buddhist. He returned to England in 1890 and became a tutor. After the death of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky in 1891, Leadbeater wielded considerable influence over Annie Besant, Blavatsky's successor, in part due to his reputed clairvoyant abilities.