Nancy Mitford

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Mitford, Nancy,

1904–73, English novelist and biographer, b. London. She managed a London bookshop during World War II and moved to Paris in 1945. Mitford and her five celebrated and politically diverse sisters (Jessica, see below; Pamela, 1907–94; Diana, 1910–2003; Unity, 1914–48; and Deborah, 1920–2014) were born into the British aristocracy, a class she satirizes in her novels, notably In Pursuit of Love (1945) and Love in a Cold Climate (1949). Her writing is sophisticated, malicious, and captivating. Indeed, her boring, bigoted, illiterate lords and amoral, irresponsible ladies have taken on the qualities of myth. She also wrote biographies of Madame de Pompadour (1954) and Frederick the Great (1970).


See her letters (1993) and C. Mosley, ed., correspondence with E. Waugh (1997) and The Mitfords: Letters between Six Sisters (2007); memoir by H. Acton (1976); biography by S. Hastings (1986, repr. 2012).

Mitford's sister Jessica Mitford, 1917–96, b. Gloucestershire, England, also a writer, is known for her witty and irreverent polemics, and her brilliant investigative journalism. Her works include The American Way of Death (1963; rev. ed. 1998), a scathing exposé of the American funeral industry; Kind and Usual Punishment (1973), a critical study of the brutality of American prisons; and The American Way of Birth (1992), an indictment of the overuse of cesarean sectionscesarean section
, delivery of an infant by surgical removal from the uterus through an abdominal incision. The operation is of ancient origin: indeed, the name derives from the legend that Julius Caesar was born in this fashion. Until advancements in the late 19th cent.
..... Click the link for more information.


See P. Y. Sussman, ed., Decca: The Letters of Jessica Mitford (2006), her memoir of her early days as a Communist (1977), and her autobiography (1960, repr. 2004). See also J. Guinness, House of Mitford (1984), M. S. Lovell, The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family (2002), and L. Thompson, The Six: The Lives of the Mitford Sisters (2016).

References in periodicals archive ?
After witnessing his rudeness to a French intellectual to whom she introduced him, Nancy Mitford asked him if it weren't a contradiction that he was so rude a man and yet he claimed to be a practicing Catholic.
Palewski's background is more interesting than I, as a Waugh reader, had been led to believe, and he is more important historically than Nancy Mitford.
I wonder if Nancy Mitford, who worked at Heywood Hill's shop in the 1940s, was as impressively erudite.
different, this is an engaging two-part drama based on the famous Nancy Mitford novel.
The BBC, in a change of strategy, is adapting 20th-century authors like Kingsley Amis and Nancy Mitford, while ITV, in the hope that fans of last year's "Oliver Twist" want some more, is following up with "Nicholas Nickelby.
In one particularly important letter to his friend and fellow author, Nancy Mitford, Waugh put the matter directly: "It is not true that any Catholic thinks the poor go to a servants' hail in heaven.
The book is nicely illustrated - there's a pretty photo of Nancy Mitford, for example, and one of Pirandello typing with one finger - and beautifully designed.
He also published works by the British authors Nancy Mitford and Angela Thirkell, as well as works by the French authors Albert Camus and Jean-Paul Sartre.
Also the St Fagans Book Club will be taking place on site when members will be discussing The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford.
Nancy Mitford - "I'd rather look ridiculous than mundane.
Eleri recommends: The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford Lowri Williams, 34, also works for the Welsh Language Board "I didn't know all of the girls well at the beginning but we've become good friends thanks to book club.