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Scandalous women in British history

Writer Mary Wollstonecraft was famous for defending women's rights, as well as for her unconventional personal life. A frank biography published by her husband William Godwin after her death, which revealed, among other things, that she had borne a child out of wedlock, provoked outrage.

from V and A Collections

Large Syringa

Chpt 16: Aesthetic Movement: Large Syringa, Edward William Godwin, from V Search the Collections


Mary Wollstencraft - in 1792 she wrote "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman", one of the first feminist writings. She followed it up with a story called "Maria: or, The Wrongs of Woman" which debated the notion that women were not entitled to expressions of sexual desire. She died 10 days after the birth of her second daughter, Mary Wollstencraft, who grew up to marry Percy Bysshe Shelley.