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Lucy Cavendish at about the time of her marriage

Lady Frederick Cavendish (Lucy Caroline; née Lyttelton; 5 September 1841 – 22 April 1925) was a pioneer of women's education.

A daughter of George Lyttelton, 4th Baron Lyttelton, she married into another aristocratic family, the Cavendishes, in 1864. Eighteen years later her husband, Lord Frederick Cavendish, was murdered in Dublin by Irish nationalists. After his death she devoted much of her time to the cause of girls' and women's education, for which she was honoured in her lifetime with an honorary degree, and posthumously when, in 1965, Cambridge University named its first post-graduate college for women after her.


Lucy Cavendish was born at the Lyttelton family house, Hagley Hall, Worcestershire on 5 September 1841. She was the second daughter of George Lyttelton, 4th Baron Lyttelton and his wife, Mary, née Glynne, whose sister married W. E. Gladstone.[1] In 1863 she was appointed a Maid of Honour to Queen Victoria, whom she attended until marrying the following year.[2]

On 7 June 1864 she married Lord Frederick Cavendish, the second son of the Duke of Devonshire. They had no children. Cavendish was elected to Parliament in 1865 and was assassinated by Irish nationalists in the Phoenix Park Murders on 6 May 1882, the day on which he took the oath of office of Chief Secretary for Ireland.[1] Though devastated by the assassination, on the day before the ringleader was hanged she sent him the small gold crucifix she had long worn, as a token of her forgiveness.[3] Gladstone was greatly moved when she told him that she could bear the loss of her beloved husband "if his death were to work good to his fellow-men, which indeed was the whole object of his life."[2] She remained a firm supporter of home rule for Ireland.[1]

After Cavendish's death, Lucy Cavendish was active in the sphere of women's education. She was of President of the Yorkshire Ladies Council of Education from 1883 to 1912. She declined the offer of the post of Mistress of Girton College, Cambridge in 1884. She was a member of the Royal Commission on Secondary Education and was a founding member of the Council of the Girls' Public Day School Company, which had been founded by her father.[1] On 6 October 1904 she received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws at the formal inauguration of the University of Leeds for "notable service to the cause of education".[4]

Lucy Cavendish died at her home, The Glebe, Penshurst, Tonbridge, on 22 April 1925. aged 83. She was buried in her husband's grave in Edensor churchyard, near Chatsworth.[1]

Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge was named in her honour in 1965.[1] She was the great-aunt of one of its founders, Margaret Braithwaite.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Boase G. C. "Cavendish, Lord Frederick Charles (1836–1882)" rev. H. C. G. Matthew, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004, online edition, October 2005, accessed 23 April 2013 (subscription or UK public library membership required)
  2. ^ a b "Obituary – Lady Frederick Cavendish", The Times, 23 April 1925, p. 14
  3. ^ Lyttelton and Hart Davis, p. 40 – letter of 17 March 1960
  4. ^ "The Papers of Lucy Cavendish". 
  5. ^ Renfrew, Jane M. "Who was Lucy Cavendish?". Rooms of Our Own - Lucy Cavendish College. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 


External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucy_Cavendish — Please support Wikipedia.
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15364 videos foundNext > 

Flower Guide Interview with Lucy Cavendish

THE WILDFLOWER ORACLE PODCAST 23rd December 2013 www.thewildfloweroracle.com.

Lucy Cavendish at Mind Body Spirit Festival Sydney May 2011

For more videos from the Mind Body Spirit Festival visit: http://www.naturaltherapypages.com.au/c/mindbodyspirit_festival_sydney_2011.

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An interview with current Lucy Cavendish College students about their time at the College.

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If you want to write a book, or create an oracle deck in the spiritual "genre", I've created a course which helps you navigate the journey...and reach your d...

Lucy Cavendish on Sensitive Children

An interview with our dear friend Lucy, asking about her experiences, wisdom, and knowledge about children, their sensitivity, and connections to all that is...

Lucy Cavendish

Lucy Cavendish. Conference & functions venue in Cambridge.

Magickal Spell Cards - Lucy Cavendish

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3022 news items


Fri, 19 Dec 2014 01:00:00 -0800

It is only a few days before Christmas and the children are, as per usual, beside themselves with excitement. They have made their lists, found their stockings, dressed the tree and had endless conversations about what “Father Christmas” might bring them.

The Guardian

The Guardian
Thu, 20 Nov 2014 16:05:13 -0800

Political journalist and broadcaster Jackie Ashley has been appointed president of Lucy Cavendish College at the University of Cambridge, which champions the education of women. Ashley, who has written a Guardian column for 12 years, will take on her ...


Fri, 12 Dec 2014 01:01:04 -0800

So it is two days before my birthday and I am, yet again, at my window waiting for my friends to arrive for my annual birthday lunch. It started three years ago (my first birthday as a singleton) and I got drunk and cried a lot and kept saying things ...

Cambridge News

Cambridge News
Wed, 26 Nov 2014 11:43:06 -0800

As a destination for women in Cambridge for over 50 years, agreeing to join Lucy Cavendish College was an easy decision for its new president. Broadcaster and Guardian columnist Jackie Ashley has been named as the all-female college's eigth leader, and ...


Fri, 05 Dec 2014 01:08:39 -0800

It is 6.30am and there is a smell of burning food wafting up the stairs. I am in bed waiting for the alarm to go off. I can't decide whether I like this moment or not. On the one hand, I enjoy knowing the morning has come again; on the other, I'll soon ...


Fri, 28 Nov 2014 01:03:55 -0800

I am in London having dinner. On my right is a lovely man, Alex, who is with his boyfriend. He is charming and funny and we chat for an age about food. Then, eventually, I turn to the woman on my left. Her name is Anna and she is about my age, rather ...

Evening Standard

Evening Standard
Thu, 04 Dec 2014 09:36:11 -0800

Scrooge you: Lucy Cavendish as the Christmas killjoy As for presents, I am on a mission to cull the endless need for boxes stacked under the tree. Maybe my parents had a point. Why do we all give our children so much stuff, most of which they don't want?


Fri, 21 Nov 2014 01:06:43 -0800

Raymond comes back from America looking happy but exhausted. He collapses in the car, a large heap of a boy-man, yawning. We've had virtually no communication since he left a week ago. This is fine by me as Raymond's retro-cool idea of not really ...

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