Mary S. Lovell





Mary S. Lovell

Author profile


born
in The United Kingdom
January 01, 1941

gender
female

website

genre


About this author

Mary was an accountant and company director for 20 years before becoming a writer. She wrote her first book in 1981 at the age of 40, while recovering from a broken back which was the result of a riding accident. She returned to accountancy but during the following 5 years she also published two further non-fiction books that were written in her spare time.

She lives in the New Forest in Hampshire, England.


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“So why did Sydney – a pretty girl, whose greatest enjoyments in life were sailing, visiting France and ice-skating, and who loved the parties and dancing she attended as a débutante – marry David, who was a countryman at heart, actively disliked meeting new people and regarded ‘abroad’ with suspicion and horror? There can be no other reason but that she fell in love with him. He was a kind man and he was very funny. He made her laugh and unquestionably loved her. Many successful marriages have been founded on less.”
Mary S. Lovell, The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family

“David was one of nine children, and Sydney was one of four. Their respective siblings produced, between 1910 and 1927, twenty-one children with the surnames Mitford, Farrer, Kearsey, Bowyer, Bowles and Bailey, and many of these first cousins were to play major parts in the lives of the Mitford children as they grew up and visited each other’s homes. But the network of kinsmen who were to people the lives of the Mitford children were rooted further back in the family tree. Both of David’s parents – ‘Bertie’ Mitford (Bertram, 1st Lord Redesdale) and Lady Clementine Ogilvy – came from large families, and he remained close to many of them and to their numerous offspring.*
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In addressing this question, one of Clementine Churchill’s daughters stated that her mother never learned the identity of her natural father though she knew he was not Henry Hozier.14 Bertie Mitford is the most likely suspect, even though the poet and writer Wilfred Scawen Blunt claimed that Natty confessed to him that her two elder daughters were fathered by Captain George ‘Bay’ Middleton, known by his foxhunting contemporaries as ‘the bravest of the brave’, and to history as the dashing lover of the sporting Empress, Elizabeth of Austria.15 This, however, must be set against the fact that Natty told a close friend, just before the birth of Clementine, that the child she was carrying was ‘Lord Redesdale’s’.”
Mary S. Lovell, The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family

“In a televised version of one of Nancy’s books, these child hunts were given a more sinister connotation with the children running terrified through woods while their father, on horseback, thundered after them with a pack of hounds baying. In fact the children loved it – they thought the hound was ‘so clever’.29 In her novel Nancy had referred to ‘four great hounds in full cry after two little girls’ and ‘Uncle Matthew and the rest would follow on horseback’.30 As a result, fiction overlaid fact, and during research for this book I met people who believed, and read articles that stated, that the Mitfords led the lives of the fictional Radletts, and at least one American journalist was convinced that David had ‘hunted’ his poor abused children with dogs. There was never any pressure to conform and the children grew as they wanted. There were no half-measures in their behaviour. ‘We either laughed so uproariously that it drove the grown-ups mad, or else it was a frightful row which ended in one of us bouncing out of the room in floods of tears, banging the door as loud as possible.”
Mary S. Lovell, The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family

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