Mary Olive Byrne|
February 19, 1904
Steuben County, New York, U.S.
May 19, 1985 (aged 81)|
Tampa, Florida, U.S.
Olive Richard (pen name)|
|Known for||Involvement in the creation of Wonder Woman|
Elizabeth Holloway Marston|
William Moulton Marston
|Children||Byrne Marston and Donald Richard Marston|
|Parent(s)||Ethel Byrne (mother)|
|Relatives||Margaret Sanger (aunt)|
Mary Olive Byrne (//), known professionally as Olive Richard (February 19, 1904 – May 19, 1985), was an American homemaker and polyamorous life partner of William Moulton Marston and Elizabeth Holloway Marston. She has been credited as an inspiration for the comic book character, Wonder Woman.
Olive Byrne and the Marstons met in 1925 while she was a senior attending Tufts University. William was her psychology professor, and she soon became his research assistant, even taking him to her sorority to do some of his research. She was instrumental in introducing him to the world of sorority baby parties (in which freshmen girls are required to dress like babies and are treated like children), at which he performed some of his experiments on human reactions to power.
Byrne was involved with William and Elizabeth Marston in a polyamorous relationship. The three lived together for a number of years. Both women had Marston's children while the three were together, and Elizabeth named her daughter Olive after Byrne. Byrne and Elizabeth Marston continued living together while raising both of their children after William's death.
Both Byrne and Elizabeth "embodied the feminism of the day." They told census takers that Olive was Elizabeth's widowed sister-in-law. Olive and Marston had two sons together, Byrne and Donn.
As reported by Jill Lepore in the book The Secret History of Wonder Woman, Olive has been credited by some as being Marston's inspiration. for the physical appearance of his iconic character, Wonder Woman, Marston himself only remarked that a pair of bracelets that Byrne frequently wore inspired the ones that would become an important feature of the comic book heroine.
Byrne's life is depicted in Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, a biographical drama also portraying Elizabeth Holloway Marston, her husband William Moulton Marston, and the creation of Wonder Woman. Byrne is portrayed in the film by Australian actress Bella Heathcote.
- "Ancestry Library Edition". Search.ancestrylibrary.com. Retrieved 18 April 2018.
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- Lepore, Jill (October 2014). "The Surprising Origin Story of Wonder Woman". Smithsonian.com. Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved October 16, 2017.
- Marston, William Moulton, Emotions of Normal People, as quoted in Noah Berlatsky, "William Marston on Sorority Baby Parties", Hooded Utilitarian, May 6, 2012.
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- Tim Hanley, Wonder Woman Unbound: The Curious History of the World's Most Famous Heroine, Chicago Review Press, 2014, pg. 12.
- Lepore, Jill (October 2014). "The Surprising Origin Story of Wonder Woman". Smithsonian.com. Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved March 3, 2016.
- Moon, Michael (2012-03-12). Darger’s Resources. Duke University Press. ISBN 0822351560.
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- "Wonder Woman creator biopic gets mysterious first teaser", ew.com, June 5, 2017.
- D'Alessandro, Anthony (September 15, 2017). "Annapurna To Release MGM's 'Death Wish' Over Thanksgiving; Sets October Date For 'Professor Marston & The Wonder Women'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
- Glenn, Joshua (April 4, 2004). "Wonder-working Power". The Boston Globe.
- Jett, Brett. "Who Is Wonder Woman?", (Manuscript) (2009): 1-71.
- Lepore, Jill. The Secret History of Wonder Woman, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2014, ISBN 9780385354042
- Malcolm, Andrew H. (February 18, 1992). "She's Behind the Match For That Man of Steel". The New York Times.
- Marston, William Moulton. Emotions Of Normal People. London, UK: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co, Ltd. 1928; ISBN 1406701165
- Valcour, Francinne. "Manipulating The Messenger: Wonder Woman As An American Female Icon" (dissertation: 2006): pp. 1–372.