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Ramee, Louise De La ("Ouida").


Amores de tenero meditatur ungui.
HORACE, Carmina, 3,6,24

Louise de la Ramee, English author, was born at Bury St. Edmunds January I, 1839, the daughter of Louis Rame, a teacher of French, and his wife Susan Sutton. She was educated at local schools and for a time in Paris. Her father's source of revenue was somewhat mysterious and after his disappearance Louise and her mother returned to London. Her first novel, "Granville de Vigne," was published in the New Monthly in 1860 and was afterwards reprinted in book form as "Held in Bondage" in 1863. Numerous novels, mostly glamorous but usually original in plot and method of presentation, followed. "Under Two Flags" (1867), is perhaps her best. It was very popular and many times reprinted, was also produced on the stage for years, and several years ago in the movies. She removed to Florence and in 1894 to Lucca, living on a grand scale up to the limits of her income, so that when her popularity declined, she was reduced to living on a small civil pension. She died at Viaruggio, Italy, January 25, 1908.

When young, "Ouida" was inclined to fall in love with every man who showed her a bit of attention; in later years she was cynical and bitter against everyone, yet liked to play the grand dame in a very theatrical way.

REFERENCES: H. G. Huntington, Memories; E. Lee, Ouida, a Memoir; F. T. Cooper, " 'Ouida'—an Estimate," The Bookman, (N.Y.), XVII, 1903, 153-59, with portrait; ibid., XXVII, 1908, 24-27 with portrait; anon., "Romantic Ouida," with portrait; Literary Digest, XXXV, 1907, 170; anon., "The truth about Ouida," ibid., 268-69; Publishers' Weekly, LXXIII, 1908, 773. †There was recently published a biography of Ouida by Eileen Bigland, entitled Ouida, the Passionate Victorian, New York, 1951, with a portrait.

Waverley Library (quarto). No. 74

† Correction made as per Volume 3.

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