Ouida

NOVELIST (ENGLAND)
BORN 1 Jan 1839, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk - DIED 25 Jan 1908, Viareggio, Toscana: 70 Via Zanardelli
REAL NAME Ramée, Louise de la
GRAVE LOCATION Bagni di Lucca, Toscana: Cimitero degli Inglesi, Via Letizia

Daughter of a French teacher and the English daughter of a wine merchant. In 1859 she met William Ainsworth who helped her getting started as an author. In 1863 she published "Held in Bondage" and in 1865 "Strathmore". In 1867 she started living at the Langham Hotel in London where she organised soirees that were visited by Oscar Wilde, Wilkie Collins, Algernon Swinburne, Robert Browning, John Millais and others.

In 1871 she moved to Italy and in 1874 she settled in Florence with her mother, where she continued writing novels. "Moths" was published in 1880 and "In Maremma" in 1882. Her books were successful but she spent most of her money. When her popularity faded after 1890 she fell into poverty until she was awarded a Civil List Pension by Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman in 1906.

She died in Viareggio in 1908 and was buried in Bagni di Lucca, where she had lived before. In Bury St. Edwards a memorial was erected in her memory.

Related persons
• has a connection with Ainsworth, William Harrison
• was visited by Collins, Wilkie
• was visited by Millais, John Everett
• was visited by Wilde, Oscar

Events
10/7/1883Vernon Lee talks to Edward Burne-Jones. In a letter to her mother Matilda she wrote that she was at a dull diner with the Stephens, but that she had a long talk with Burne-Jones about Mrs Stillman who was the most beautiful woman Burne-Jones had ever seen. He also told her he admired the novelist Ouida greatly. [Burne-Jones, Edward Coley ][Lee, Vernon][Spartali Stillman, Marie]

Images

The grave of Louise de la Ramée (known as Ouida) at the Cimitero degli Inglesi, Bagna di Lucca.
Picture by Androom (18 Feb 2018)

 

Sources
• Browning, D.C. (editor), Dictionary of Literary biography, Dent, London, 1958
• Gagel, Amanda, Selected Letters of Vernon Lee, 1856 - 1935, Volume I, 1865-1884, Routledge, 2016
Ouida - Wikipedia


Ozy, Alice

Published: 04 Mar 2018
Last update: 22 Dec 2019