South Africa's former President Nelson Mandela (L) and his wife Graca Machel wave on their arrival after closing ceremony of the 2010 World Cup just before the football final between The Netherlands and Spain at Soccer City stadium in Soweto, suburban Johannesburg on July 11, 2010. *AFP photo
South Africa's former President Nelson Mandela (L) and his wife Graca Machel wave on their arrival after closing ceremony of the 2010 World Cup just before the football final between The Netherlands and Spain at Soccer City stadium in Soweto, suburban Johannesburg on July 11, 2010. *AFP photo

  Nelson Mandela’s real first name is Rolihlahla — a Xhosa name which means ‘troublemaker’. He was given the English name Nelson by a teacher at primary school

• He was a member of the royal family of the Thembu tribe in the Eastern Cape area of South Africa.

• He ran away from home to Johannesburg in 1941 to escape an arranged marriage

• Mandela founded South Africa’s first black law firm, Mandela & Tambo, with close friend and fellow political activist Oliver Tambo

• Mandela has a nuclear particle, a prehistoric woodpecker and an orchid named after him

• He is an honorary member of the Manchester United football team

• He was first living person to be made an honorary citizen of Canada and the last person to receive the Lenin Peace Prize from the former Soviet Union.

• Mandela’s favourite breakfast was porridge

• He was married three times and had six children and 20 grandchildren

• During his time underground, he was nicknamed ‘the Black Pimpernel’ because of his ability to evade capture.

• Mandela contracted tuberculosis while imprisoned in the grim Robben Island jail in the 1960s and suffered from lung problems throughout his life

• The Scottish city of Glasgow renamed St George’s Place in the city Nelson Mandela Place in 1986, one of the first cities to honour him — to the fury of the South African Consulate, which had offices there.