Not Nancy Mitford

The dashing girl whose picture I posted yesterday has been identified as – among others –  Mulan, Maria Walewska (closer), Lady Hester Stanhope, Maria Lebstuck, the Contessa d’Aspi d’Istria (from The Bellini Card), Juana Galan, Lady Chatterton and the young Nancy Mitford.

No. She ain’t any one of them. And the only person who got it right so far is my sister Tabitha, who just knows a lot – but she can’t have the prize copy of An Evil Eye because she’s got one already and anyway family members are debarred from winning, as it says on the cornflake packets.

But here’s a clue or two: Stanislaw Palewski would have both known and admired her, and mourned her passing in 1831 at the tender age of 25.

Here she is, doing her thing the year she died. And that really is a clue.

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