Lady Colin Campbell

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For Lady Colin Campbell (1857-1911), see Gertrude Elizabeth Blood.
Lady Colin Campbell
Born George William Ziadie[1]
(1949-08-17) 17 August 1949 (age 66)
Saint Andrew Parish, Jamaica
Residence London
Other names Georgia Arianna Ziadie
Occupation Author, socialite, radio hostess
Notable work Diana in Private 1992
Spouse(s) Lord Colin Ivar Campbell (m. 1974; div. 1975)
Children two sons

Lady Colin Campbell, known as Georgie Campbell (17 August 1949), is a Jamaican-born British writer, socialite, and television and radio personality.

Early life[edit]

Campbell was born in Jamaica, one of four children of Michael and Gloria Ziadie. The Ziadie family is prominent in Jamaica, the descendants of six Maronite Catholic brothers who emigrated from Lebanon in the early 20th century.[2] The family were Lebanese Eastern Orthodox Christians.[citation needed] Her mother came from English, Irish, Portuguese and Spanish ancestry. Her maternal great-grandmother, family name De Pass, was a Sephardic Jew.[3][2]


Campbell is most well-known for her books on royals, including biographies on Diana, Princess of Wales and Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. Her 1992 book, Diana in Private: The Princess Nobody Knows, detailed information about the Diana's struggle with bulimia and affair with James Hewitt. Campbell was "dismissed as a fantasist" but later vindicated when the information was corroborated.[4] Diana in Private appeared on the The New York Times Best Seller list in 1992.[5]

Cambell's 2009 book, Daughter of Narcissus: A Family's Struggle to Survive Their Mother's Narcissistic Personality Disorder, was well received.

Some of her books have included received criticism for unverified claims, including writing in The Queen Mother, The Untold story of Elizabeth Bowes Lyon, that the Queen Mother was born to the family's French cook used as a surrogate.[6][7]

Personal life[edit]

Born with birth defects including a fused labia,[1] Campbell was registered as a boy and brought up as male, though she is genetically female. Campbell has written and spoken about the struggles she faced being raised as a boy during her childhood, including bullying from classmates and cruelty from her parents. “The international protocol in those days was to do what they did; it was perfectly standard," she told The Daily Telegraph in 2013. "In 1949, the feeling was that it was infinitely better to give a handicapped child a little plus, and male was much better than female.”[4]

She sought help at age 13 by secretly contacting her mother's gynecologist, who was sympathetic. When her parents discovered what she had done, they had her hospitalised, where she was injected with male hormones for three weeks. Campbell refused to live as a boy; and her father told her the only solution was for her to commit suicide by taking rat poison.[4]

Campbell moved to New York City to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology.[8] She was not able to have corrective surgery until she was 21, when her grandmother discovered what had occurred and gave her the $5,000 she needed. Campbell legally changed her name to Georgia Arianna and received a new birth certificate. "No one ever faced the knife more eagerly than I. You would have thought I was going on a wonderful cruise - which, in a way, I suppose I was," Campbell wrote in her autobiography. She had already started working as a model in New York City prior to her surgery and was considered a great beauty.[1][6]

In 1974, after knowing him only five days, she married Lord Colin Ivar Campbell, son of Ian Campbell, 11th Duke of Argyll. She left him after nine months, and stated he was abusive and addicted to drugs and alcohol. The couple divorced after 14 months. She successfully sued several publications that printed she was a transvestite who had undergone a sex change, and she accused her ex-husband of selling the untrue story for money.[1][4]

In 1993, she adopted two boys from Russia, Misha and Dima.[4] She resides in Kennington, London.[6]


  • The Queen Mother: The Untold Story of Elizabeth Bowes Lyon, Who Became Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. 2012. 
  • Daughter of Narcissus: A Family's Struggle to Survive Their Mother's Narcissistic Personality Disorder. 2009.  (Autobiography, profile of her mother)
  • The Real Diana. 2005.  (A republication of her 1997 book, with sources)
  • Empress Bianca. 2005.  (Withdrawn after legal threats from Lily Safra and subsequently reissued)
  • A Life Worth Living. 1997.  (autobiography)
  • The Royal Marriages: What Really Goes on in the Private World of the Queen and Her Family. 1993. 
  • Diana in Private: The Princess Nobody Knows. 1992. 
  • Lady Colin Campbell’s Guide to Being a Modern Lady. 1986. 


  1. ^ a b c d "They said she was a boy". The Daily Telegraph. 2 August 1997. Retrieved 27 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "A very unladylike lady!"; by Jenny Johnson. Daily Mail; 10 January 2008
  4. ^ a b c d e Llewellyn Smith, Julia (2 November 2013). "Lady Colin Campbell: 'My father said I should take rat poison’". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  5. ^ "BEST SELLERS: June 21, 1992". The New York Times. 21 June 1992. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c "Fury over book's claim that Queen Mother and her brother were born to family's French cook". The Daily Mail. 30 March 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2015. 
  7. ^ Catherine Ostler (2012-04-21). "Queen Mother book: Defiance of Lady Poison Pen: Vilified for her new book's lurid claims, an utterly unrepentant Lady Colin Campbell dismisses her critics as royal 'suck-up merchants' | Mail Online". Retrieved 2012-04-30. 
  8. ^ "Interview with Lady Colin Campbell, Author of Daughter of Narcissus". The Writer's Life. 27 October 2009. Retrieved 28 March 2015.