Daniel Lambert was named after Leicesterís most famous jailer and heavy man
(weighing over 52 stone). Daniel was born on 13th March 1770 in Boar Lane, his
weight gaining rapidly in his teens and, by the age of twenty three, he was
tipping the scales at 32 stone. Daniel followed in his father's footsteps as
keeper of Leicester gaol close to his birthplace. His strength became legendary;
a prolific swimmer, he could carry two men upon his back whilst doing the breast
stroke. Such was his power, he was reputed to have fought a bear with his hands
and come off the victor.
Daniel Lambert's duty as a jailer was conducted with benevolence; testimonials
from the prisoners in his charge were useful in his later years, when Daniel
would exhibit himself as a freak for a price, eventually becoming a celebrity of
society. Daniel died on a visit to Stamford races in 1809; he was lodging at the
Wagon & Horses in the town opposite St Martins, where he is buried to this day.
Such was his size that a doorway had to be taken out of the inn to get his
coffin out; it took twenty men to lower his body in to the grave.
On his death, Daniel weighed 52 stone 10 pounds.
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