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Digital Subscriptions > DIVA Magazine > November 2017 > May Morris and the Lady Gardener

May Morris and the Lady Gardener


“I’m a remarkable woman – always was, though none of you seemed to think so,” said May Morris in 1936 in a letter to playwright George Bernard Shaw.

May Morris is a name that is unfamiliar to many. As William Morris’s daughter, her talents were overshadowed by her father’s, in part because she championed his work. In addition to editing and writing the introduction to William Morris’ collected works, May specified in her will that Kelmscott Manor – her father’s residence – was to be preserved as he kept it and made available for public viewing.

However, supporting her father’s work was just one part of May’s life. She learned embroidery from her aunt, Elizabeth Burden, and mother, Jane Morris, who was a talented artist (though is more renowned as a muse – aka “Stunner” – for Dante Gabriel Rossetti and William Morris). Despite her artistry, Jane seems less confident than May, reportedly saying in 1904, “Why should there be any special record of me when I have never done any special work?”

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About DIVA Magazine

Comedian, actor, author and all-round superstar Margaret Cho has been thrilling audiences around the world for more than 20 years, and we’re delighted to have her on our cover this month. In a revealing interview with Jane Czyzselska, she talks about “yellow face”, the threat of nuclear war, and her new provocative new show Fresh Off The Bloat. Also in this issue… Munroe Bergdorf joins the DIVA team! The King and I: Carrie Lyell meets tennis legend Billie Jean King The Hearts will go: Donna Deitch on the legacy of her iconic film Desert Hearts Toya Delazy: Roxy Bourdillon chats to the real life Powerpuff Girl Mo Kenney on her new record The Details Same-sex parenting 101: A handy guide to navigating life as a queer mama Write here, write now: Books editor Kaite Welsh looks ahead to National Novel Writing Month Queer classics revisited PLUS: Homotopia, travel and so much more!