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Lafayette L1434
Neg. Date: 09-07-1897

copyright V&A


Lafayette L1435
Neg. Date: 09-07-1897

copyright V&A

Lady Wolverton, née Edith Amelia Ward (1872–1956)

Eldest daughter of 1st Earl of Dudley, and in 1895 married Frederic Glyn, 4th Baron Wolverton, a senior managing-partner in a private bank, a courtier, sportsman and author of the popular Five Months' Sport in Somali Land.

The couple typified the glamour and gilded life-style of the respected wealthy and aristocratic Victorian world just beyond the circle of the fast-living Prince and Princess of Wales.

The first recorded meeting with Princess Daisy was at the Devonshire House Ball of 1897. As Daisy’s centre of attention was still England, Lady Wolverton’s impersonation of Britannia must have played upon Daisy’s homesickness.

In these two images, made against a painted seascape backdrop, Lady Wolverton holds a trident and wears a plumed helmet with raised laurel wreath and a cuirass of silver disks. Her sash bears the Garter motto "Honi soit qui mal y pense” and her double layered skirt is embroidered with the thistle of Scotland and the rose of England.

Of the five extant negatives, only the seated image of Lady Wolverton shows the triple-masted ship, the symbol of Britain's dominion of the seas, and the lighthouse representing the safe shores of home — symbols which were added to the negative by the studio retouching department, perhaps as a reference to their recent disappearance from the British coinage.

In July 1906 Daisy met the Wolvertons again when she and Hans Heinrich were guests at their house in Newmarket, a town famous for its horse racing. Daisy noted:

“very nice house and charming people. I lost 48 pounds at poker...Hans enjoyed himself enormously”.

Although on opposite sides during World War I, both women turned their hand to nursing which was just about the only war effort open to aristocratic or royal ladies.

In 1918 Lady Wolverton was awarded the CBE.