“There have been very few of England’s magicians that have not learned from another magician. Gilbert Norrel and Jonathan Strange are examples of magicians that were self-made. Mr. Gilbert Norrel being what you may call an academic magician, spent years locked away with his books and spells. Although Jonathan Strange’s only text was a copy of the Raven King he seems to have a natural inclination toward magic.
Very little is known about the Raven King’s early years, but it is assumed that the Raven King learned both magic and Kingship while at court of the King of Faerie.
Another seemingly self-made magician is Thomas Godbless (1105?-82) of Nottinghamshire. Although Godbless did spend some time with the Raven King, he had been practicing magic for years before this encounter."
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Susanna Clarke