Lord John Grey may not have made his way into Jamie Fraser's heart, but he sure made it into ours. His character is one of the most beautifully complex out of the entire series. Lord John Grey's commitment to Jamie is so great, he's saved his life on several occasions, and went out of his way more than a few times to make his life easier and happier. Even after knowing that his affections could never be returned, he never budged when the opportunity arose to be there for Jamie.
Even towards the one person who could be perceived as standing in his way, Claire, he shows a tremendous amount of respect for. There's much to be unpacked from the character of John Grey based on his appearance on Outlander alone. But even if we look beyond the show, there are more than a few things that make him even more extraordinary. Let's take a look at ten things you didn't know about Lord John Grey.
10 He Used An Alias
We've all grown to know and love him as Lord John Grey, the brave and stunning English soldier and diplomat that fell in love with Jamie Fraser. Such love as made him go above and beyond what anyone thought possible to satisfy the target of his affections, in such an honorable and inconspicuous way, it's impossible to remain impervious to this character.
However, Lord John Grey didn't always introduce himself as such. In fact, in the book Dragonfly in Amber, a teenage Grey introduces himself as Willam Grey once he is held captive by Jamie. In order to make it easier for readers, author Diana Gabaldon made Willam John's middle name, and he became known as Lord John Grey from then on.
9 He's A Very Important Character
When you think about Outlander, you automatically think Jamie and Claire. This epic love story has crossed continents and timeframes, and it has given a whole new definition to the expression "relationship goals." There would be no Outlander without Jamie and Claire, that much is obvious. But there wouldn't be an Outlander as we know it without Lord John Grey either.
So much so that when it comes down to it, Lord John Grey appears in person in 16 out of every single Outlander related novel. Just for a little bit of perspective, Jamie is present in 14, whilst Claire is in 10. Not too bad for a secondary character, right?
8 He's A Victim Of Sexual Assault
It's no secret to anyone that Outlander isn't shy when it comes to dealing with the issue of sexual assault. In fact, it does a stellar job when it comes to portraying such a horrible thing. To this date, Jamie's rape and torture, and young Ian's sexual assault are two of the most talked-about scenes in the entire show, if not in the history of television.
Although they didn't show it, Lord John Grey was also a victim of rape. When he was only 17 years old, the young Englishman was attacked and assaulted in the army's camp. This resulted in Lord John Grey always carrying a dagger with him wherever he goes, which he refers to as his lucky dagger.
7 He Has His Own Series
When you come up with such a compelling and beloved character, as an author, you're bound to want to further develop that character. And Lord John Grey is definitely one of those characters that deserved to live a life beyond the backdrop where he was first introduced to fans.
Besides his appearances in the Outlander series, Lord John Grey starred in his own of series of historical mystery novels and novellas. This was brilliant since it provided fans with a lot more insight into the life and story of such a beloved person. Plus, who doesn't love more Diana Gabaldon books in their life? It's a win-win situation!
6 He's Not Ashamed Of Who He His
One of Lord John Grey's biggest character traits is his homosexuality. Particularly in a time when homosexuality was something that could easily get you killed, having an LGBTQ+ character is something worthy of note. Just because they weren't mentioned in history, that doesn't mean they didn't exist.
And although Lord John Grey is gay, and he takes the necessary precautions to keep this dangerous fact a secret, he's not ashamed of who he is. There's a big difference between hiding your homosexuality because it can get you killed and hiding it because you're ashamed of it. He admits his feelings to Jamie without sorrow, and he is free with his sexuality throughout the series, especially in the books.
5 He's High Born
Obviously, the title of Lord already speaks of John Grey's lineage. Plus, the way he carries himself in life, the way he dresses, and the way he speaks, are more than enough to believe the character is high born. He has quite a big family; aside from his parents, he has three older brothers.
Born in the late 18th century, Lord John Grey is the son of Gerard Grey, Duke of Pardloe and Earl of Melton, and his wife Benedicta Grey. Quite the parentage! And one that earned him the designation of Lord, which is the proper title to address the youngest son of a Duke.
4 He Was A Member Of The Beefsteak Club
In case you misread it, we advise you to go back and take another look at the title. No, Lord John Grey was not a member of the Breakfast Club. Mostly because it didn't exist back when he was living his awesome life, but he just might fit in if it was around. Either way, John Grey was a member of the Beefsteak Club.
His uncle enrolled him almost immediately after he was born, and he started to learn how to use a blade when he was only three years old. Once he turned seven, he started making weekly visits to the Club, where he probably learned how to behave like a gentleman and was trained in all the necessary arts.
3 His First Relationship Was At Eighteen
Soon after being raped, Lord John Grey began his first relationship, when he was only eighteen years old. Although the author doesn't go into too much detail regarding the feelings of the character after his assault, it's clear that it didn't inhibit him sexually or in any way made him ashamed of his sexual orientation.
Grey began a relationship with a lieutenant in his regiment. Hector was twenty years old, and this first love affair had a very tragic ending. Hector passed away in battle, and while we don't know exactly how Lord Grey dealt with this loss, he later moved on to more affairs and relationships.
2 He's Had A String Of Affairs
Continuing the string that is a direct result of what we just mentioned above, arises the fact that Lord John Grey was far from being a saint when it comes to his sexuality. In a time where one had to be extremely careful to hide one's sexuality if it didn't abide by the norm, Lord Grey did a stellar job of being free with his sexuality without making it known that he was gay.
After his first relationship with Hector at 18, he went on to have quite a few more, including major George Everett and Percy Wainwright. He also has a couple unnamed one night stands and often visits Lavender House, a club that specific to satisfy the needs of homosexual men, who were then forced to hide their sexual orientation.
1 He's Quite The Detective
In addition to all the amazing things that make Lord John grey such a fantastic character - his enormous heart, his courage, his honor, and his integrity - he is also quite a good detective. Throughout his appearances on the novellas and other works, alongside the original Outlander books, Lord John grey is often involved in investigating a series of happenings, with great success.
For instance, he investigates a man who is suspected of having syphilis, a supposed succubus who is making a number of male victims and solves the mystery surrounding his father. Overall, Lord Grey is an incredibly compelling character that makes both the show and the books even better than they already are.