Prematurity isn’t a new thing and in fact some famous names and high achievers had a premature start to life. Some were born centuries ago and battled incredible odds to survive in the first place given the conditions and views at the time. Some of the many famous Prems include:
Stevie Wonder was born at 34 weeks gestation in 1950. A child prodigy and hugely successful musician, he has won 22 Grammy awards and has had over 30 top 10 hits.
Stevie Wonder is blind due to retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), a complication of prematurity caused by underdeveloped blood vessels on a premature baby’s retinas.
Sir Issac Newton
One of the world’s most famous and influential scientists, Sir Issac Newton was born December 25, 1642. He weighed just 3 pounds at birth, and was not expected to live beyond a few hours. Not only did he survive, but he went on to describe the laws of gravity and motion.
Sir Winston Churchill
Although he wasn’t due to be born until January of the following year, Sir Winston Churchill was born on November 30, 1874. Although he was born early, Churchill went on to become Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, a gifted military leader, and a recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature.
American novelist Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, was born 2 months early in November of 1835. He weighed just 5 lb at birth. His novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has been called “the Great American Novel.”
Born prematurely in 1885, Anna Pavlova became one of the world’s most famous ballerinas. Her small size and stature, likely a result of her premature birth, set her apart from other ballerinas of the time.
German astronomer and mathematician. He was born in 1571 and had an estimated I.Q. 160. He had a bad start in life as he was a seven month baby and seven month babies at that time were proverbially thought “to be weak in body and mind”. As he grew, however, his body became strong and his superior intellect evolved. He became the Principal Mathematician to the Emperor and a founder of modern astronomy and physics. He elucidated the Copernican concept of the Universe.
Physicist and Nobel Prize Winner in 1921, he was born early in Ulm, Germany in March 1879. He contributed more than any other scientist to the 20th-century vision of physical reality. At his birth, Albert’s mother was reputedly frightened that her infant’s head was so large and oddly shaped. His parents also worried about his intellectual development as a child due to his initial language delay and his lack of fluency until the age of nine, though he was one of the top students in his elementary school and then progressed rapidly from there.