Thackeray Ritchie, Anne

BORN 9 Jun 1837, London: 18 Albion Street - DIED 20 Feb 1919, Freshwater, Isle of Wight: The Porch
BIRTH NAME Thackeray, Anne Isabella
GRAVE LOCATION London: St. John-at-Hampstead, Churchyard Extension, Church Row, Hampstead (H 015)

Daughter of the author William Makepeace Thackeray and his wife Isabella Shaw. Her mother sufferered from depressions and after an unsuccessful suicide attempt she was mentally ill for the rest of her life and had to be cared for in institutions. She lived with her sister Minnie with their grandparents and their nurse Jessie Brodie in Paris.

In 1846 Thackeray bought a house in Young Street in Kensington, London and brought his daughters home from France. It was a coming and going of literary visitors and Tennyson and Carlisle were close friends. In 1853 Thackeray visited Italy with his daughters.

Thackeray supported Anne's first writings and in 1863 her first novel "The Story of Elizabeth" was serialised in the Cornhill Magazine that was at that time no longer edited by her father.

Thackeray suddenly died in 1863 and the girls were devastated. He left them a small fortune and they settled in a small house in Brompton. In 1867 Minnie married the journalist and author Leslie Steohen and they lived together.

Her books sold well and her literary reputation grew. "Miss Angel" (1875) was based on the life of Angelica Kauffman. Minnie died in 1875 and left Leslie with their small daughter Laura. In 1877 to the surprise of many Anne, aged 40, married her cousin Richmond Thackeray, who was seventeen years her junior. He abandoned a very promising career to earn a living for his family but the marriage was a success and they had two children, Hester and Billy.

Anne continued to write novels until 1885. She edited her father's works afterwards and published memories of him and his books although he had never wanted to be the subject of a biography. She also wrote about Charles Dickens and Elizabeth Gaskell.

Richmond was knighted in 1907 for his work in public service. He died in 1912 of pneumonia. By that time Anne was a celebrity reminding the literary world of a time that had gone. She was a friend of Henry James and John Singer Sargent painted her portrait as gracious old lady.

She died in 1919 at her home at the Isle of Wright. She was the step-aunt of Victoria Woolf who wrote an obituary for her in the Times Literary Supplement. She was buried in the grave of Richmond at St. John-at-Hampstead in London.

• Father: Thackeray, William Makepeace
• Husband: Ritchie, Richmond (1877-1912)
• Sister: Stephen-Thackeray, Minnie

Related persons
• wrote about Dickens, Charles
• was a friend of Dickens, Kate
• wrote about Gaskell, Elizabeth
• knew Joachim, Joseph
• was a friend of Kemble, Adelaide
• corresponded with Kemble, Fanny
• was painted by Sargent, John Singer
• was a friend of Stephen, Julia Prinsep


The grave of Anne Ritchie Thackeray and Ritchmond Ritchie at St. John-at-Hampstead, London.
Picture by Androom (15 Aug 2016)


The grave of Anne Ritchie Thackeray and Ritchmond Ritchie at St. John-at-Hampstead, London.
Picture by Androom (15 Aug 2016)


• Garnett, Henrietta, Anny, A Life of AnneThackeray Ritchie, Chatto & Windus, London, 2004
• Gérin, Winifred, Anne Thackeray Ritchie, A Biography, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1981
Anne Thackeray Ritchie, Novelist, Essayist and Memoirist. A Review of "Memory and Legacy: A Thackeray Family Biography, 1876-1919" by John Aplin (2011)

Thackeray, William Makepeace

Published: 11 Sep 2016
Last update: 20 May 2023