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Dorothea (Dolly) Parry, later Lady Arthur Ponsonby

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Dorothea (Dolly) Parry, later Lady Arthur Ponsonby, having married Sir Arthur in 1898. Dolly was one of Sylvia's closest friends and admirers - "I would rather marry her than anyone I know, she is so wonderfully fascinating and good," she wrote in her diary in 1894. Peter quoted a great deal from her diaries and letters in his 'Morgue', and I too benefitted from an afternoon's worth of delving through them at Shulbrede Priory, thanks to the generosity of her daughter, Bess. She wrote to me (24 July 1977):

"I think my mother-in-law [Dolly] resented the fact that Barrie brought up the boys in a way she did not think the parents would have done. She and my father in law were socialists by that time and though both her father Hubert Parry (the musician) and Arthur Ponsonby had been at Eton she had
a prejudice against it (she was anyway very prejudiced person) & they sent their own son (my husband) to a Quaker school – partly to because they were C.O's [conscientious objectors] (this was during the First World War) & they thought he would be teased if his parents were such.

"Dolly adored both Sylvia and Arthur D & always spoke of them with great feeling. The Parrys & the du Mauriers were old friends and Gerald sent Dolly two tickets for his first nights for many years. I don’t think there was anything dramatic about the friendship lapsing – friendships do I’m
afraid - but they remained on good terms and Barrie sent us a wedding present in 1929."

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