Society's Queen

Society's Queen : The Life of Edith, Marchioness of Londonderry

3.69 (36 ratings by Goodreads)
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From the author of the critically acclaimed THE VICEROY'S DAUGHTERS, the story of a glittering aristocrat who was also at the heart of political society in the interwar years. At the age of twenty-one, Edith Chaplin married one of the most eligible bachelors of the day, the eldest son of the sixth Marquess of Londonderry. Her husband served in the Ulster cabinet and was Air Minister in the National Government of 1934-5. Edith founded the Women's Legion during the First World War and was also an early campaigner for women's suffrage. She created the renowned Mount Stewart Gardens in County Down that are now owned by the National Trust. All her life, Edith remained at the heart of politics both in Westminster and Ireland. She is perhaps best known for her role as 'society's queen' - a hostess to the rich and famous. Her close circle of friends included Winston Churchill, Lady Astor, Neville Chamberlain and Harold Macmillan who congregated in her salon, known as 'The Ark'. Other members included artists and writers such as John Buchan, Sean O'Casey. Britain's first Labour prime minister, Ramsey MacDonald, became romantically obsessed by more

Product details

  • Paperback | 416 pages
  • 120 x 196 x 30mm | 339.99g
  • Orion Publishing Co
  • Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 16
  • 0753817306
  • 9780753817308
  • 199,806

About Anne De Courcy

Anne de Courcy is a well-known writer and journalist. In the 1970s she was Woman's Editor on the London Evening News and in the 1980s she was a regular feature-writer for the Evening Standard. She is also a former feature writer and reviewer for the Daily Mail. Her recent books include THE VICEROY'S DAUGHTERS and DEBS AT WAR. Go to for more more

Review Text

They were the Celebs of their day; aristocratic, rich and powerful: the Society Hostesses. Queen of them all was Edith Chaplin, descended from a Duke and a (rather grand) Country Squire and leading politician, she fell in love with, and married, Charley, heir to the sixth Marquess of Londonderry, with extensive estates in Northern Ireland. Partly through him, though largely on her own account, Edith exerted considerable authority, especially in the field of women's rights and freedoms. All her life her special friends were men - usually prominent in their own territory; and frequently they fell in love with her (Prime Minister Ramsey MacDonald became obsessed) but she loved Charley faithfully all her life, despite his own persistent, and blatant, infidelity. Born in the last years of Victoria's reign, she lived almost into the Swinging Sixties - a period which suited her perfectly. A marvellously entertaining account of the last glory days of the British Empire, and its aftermath. Highly recommended. (Kirkus UK)show more

Rating details

36 ratings
3.69 out of 5 stars
5 28% (10)
4 33% (12)
3 25% (9)
2 8% (3)
1 6% (2)
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