14 FEBRUARY 1941, Page 5

Of one woman-writer of much earlier than the early twenties

it can certainly not be said that oblivion had overtaken her. Elizabeth and Her German Garden was written as long ago as 1898, but it sells steadily, and must therefore be read widely, today, more than forty years after. So are several later volumes from the same gifted pen, notably The Caravaners and Princess Priscilla's Fortnight. Mr. Skeffington appeared as lately as last year. The books never bore the writer's name. They were always " by the author of Elizabeth and Her German Garden." Consequently the bare announcement this week that the Countess Russell had died in Charleston, South Carolina, no doubt meant little even to confirmed readers of the Elizabeth books. It was not as Lady Russell, but as the Countess von Arnim, that she wrote that delightful series, most of which dealt with her life with her German husband and their family. Her life with her subsequent English husband, the late Earl Russell, elder brother of the present Earl (Mr. Bertrand Russell) was depicted, in very different vein, in Vera, published in 192x, two years after she and the Earl had separated.

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