Lucie, Lady Duff-Gordon

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Lucie, Lady Duff-Gordon
This article is about the mid-19th century author; you may be looking for the early 20th century fashion designer Lucy, Lady Duff-Gordon.

Lucie, Lady Duff-Gordon (1821–1869) was an English writer. She is best known for her Letters from Egypt and Letters from the Cape. She suffered from tuberculosis and in 1861<Victorian Prose: An Anthology> went to South Africa for the 'climate' which she hoped would help her health, living near the Cape of Good Hope for several years before travelling to Egypt in 1862.

In Egypt, she settled in Luxor where she learned Arabic and wrote many letters to her husband and her mother about her observation of Egyptian culture, religion and customs. Many critics regard her as being 'progressive' and tolerant, although she also held problematic views of various racial groups. Her letters home are celebrated for their humor, her outrage at the ruling Ottomans, and many personal stories gleaned from the people around her. In many ways they are also typical of orientalist traveller tales of this time.

Most of her letters are to her husband, Alexander Duff-Gordon and her mother, Mrs. Sarah Austin. She married Duff-Gordon in Kensington in 1840[1] and had three children. Their daughter, Janet Ann Ross (née Duff Gordon), was born in 1842 and died in 1927.

Lady Duff-Gordon was also the author of a number of translations, including one of Wilhelm Meinhold's The Amber Witch.

She is one of the characters in the novel The Mistress of Nothing by Kate Pullinger.


  1. ^ "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved 9 November 2010. "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved 9 November 2010. 

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