Collection: Lucie Duff Gordon

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Lucie, Lady Duff Gordon (1842-1927) was an English writer. She is best known for her Letters from Egypt and Letters from the Cape. She suffered from tuberculosis and in 1851 went to South Africa for the climate which she hoped would help her health, living near the Cape of Good Hope for several years before travelling to Egypt in 1862. In Egypt, she settled in Luxor where she learned Arabic and wrote many letters to her husband and her mother about her observation of Egyptian culture, religion and customs. Many critics regard her as being 'progressive' and tolerant, although she also held problematic views of various racial groups. Her letters home are celebrated for their humor, her outrage at the ruling Ottomans, and many personal stories gleaned from the people around her. In many ways they are also typical of orientalist traveller tales of this time. Most of her letters are to her husband, Alexander Duff-Gordon and her mother, Sarah Austin.