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Margaret Leslie Hore-Ruthven in the early 1920s. T

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The Hon. Margaret Leslie Hore-Ruthven (1902–1970) was one of the Ruthven Twins, or Ralli Twins, a pair of so-called Bright Young Things famed for their antics.

Margaret - nick-named "Peggy" or simply "P" - was born in 1902, the daughter of Walter Hore-Ruthven, 10th Lord Ruthven of Freeland and Mary Ruthven, Lady Ruthven of Freeland.

As a young woman, Peggy and her twin sister Alison Mary Hore-Ruthven, were among the founders of the unofficial society of Bright Young People, were dubbed by newspapers the "Ralli Twins" and by society as "A&P". They were identical twins and used to dress alike. According to Cecil Beaton's The Book of Beauty:

"The Ruthven Twins are the most striking pair, always identically dressed; even to the brass necklace, they are indistinguishable from one another. Richly carved with large full mouths, high cheek bones, and knobbly noses, they are as decorative as a pair of Assyrian rams. They are Byzantine goddess, dressed like fairies in a circus design by Picasso, with their dark locks tied with little tinsel bows, their spangled ballet-skirts, and low-heeled shoes."

The Ruthven twins were among the firsts in society to wear the low-heeled slippers making them fashionable. Under the name of the Ralli Twins, they had a career dancing on stage, but family pressure hadthem give up this venture.

In 1931 Margaret married Peter Llewelyn Davies. Barrie wrote to a friend, "The event is one I have long hoped for, and when it is accomplished I suppose I shall feel that my task is over and, as [W E] Henly wrote, the long day done."

Margaret carried the Huntington's Disease gene, which only developed in middle age. She became fascinated with Peter's family, and compiled a photographic scrap book, made up from photos from other family albums, to accompany Peter's "Morgue". The album can be found in our database.

Peter and Peggy had three sons: Ruthven (1933-1998), George (b. 1935) and Peter (1940-1989). All three boys inherited the dread gene, and Peter - the youngest and brightest of the three - committed suicide in 1989, as his father had done.


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