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Catherine Wendell and Tilly Losch

Catherine Wendell and Tilly Losch: The Two Duped Wives of Porchey Carnarvon

Porchey Carnarvon, Highclere Castle’s Sixth Earl of Carnarvon married twice. First, in 1922, he wooed an American-born beauty named Catherine Wendell and secondly, in 1939, he persuaded the well-known Austrian ballet dancer, turned actress, Tilly Losch to the altar, well, at least to the Registry Office. When they married Porchey, ( who was a life long flirt and sex pest ) the two women were vulnerable and penniless. Their marital capitulation into the chore of being Porchey’s bed mate was nothing to do with his looks or magnetic sex appeal or of being wonderfully romanced, it was instead all down to acquiring a husband who was better off than they were financially. Socially both women made an impact on many men, they were no angels. Whilst Porchey made reasonable husband material on grounds of title, money and property neither relationship was a love match and both women were duped by their family and friends into risking the holy state of matrimony. The marriages proved hell holes for the women. Porchey was an egotist and regularly unfaithful and cruel. Catherine turned to alcohol and suffered a series of nervous breakdowns. She tried to kill herself. Tilly escaped to America after just ten weeks as Highclere’s chatelaine, whilst Porchey lined up his next Countess. This is the story of how these two women caught in the trap of being Porchey’s wife overcame the abuses, and their own personal tragedies and health scares, to find inner happiness. Catherine eventually found peace with a man who loved her. Tilly (always the more public and charismatic of Porchey’s wives) became an amateur artist, whilst continuing to ply her trade as one of the iconic symbols of the 20th Century.


mr William Cross | talks | www


Date and Time:

5 November 2013 at 7:30 pm


2 hours



Marshfield WI
Marshfield Village Hall
Wellfield Road

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Organised by:

William Cross, FSA Scot
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Members Only

Available from:

Apply to the Secretary of Marshfield Woman's Institute c/o Marshfield Village Hall

Membership Information:

This is a members-only event

Apply to the Secretary of Marshfield Woman's Institute c/o Marshfield Village Hall

Additional Information:

An illustrated talk from William Cross, FSA Scot on his new book Catherine and Tilly, Porchey Carnarvon's Two Duped Wives

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