John William Strutt was born on 12 November 1842 at Langford Grove in Maldon, Essex. John William Strutt's father (born about 1797 in Harley Street, London) was the second Baron Rayleigh of Terling Place, Witham, in the county of Essex. His mother was Clara Elizabeth Latouche Vicars (born in Port Louis, Mauritius about 1825). John William Strutt had younger siblings, Clara (born about 1845), Richard (born about 1848), Charles (born about 1850) and Edward (born about 1855). Certainly, it was a family with little previous interest in science for they were mostly landowners with interests in the countryside.