Alice Kipling

Alice Caroline Kipling (4 April 1837 – 22 November 1910) was one of the MacDonald sisters, four Scottish women of the Victorian era, notable for their contribution to the arts and their marriages to well-known men. A writer and poet, she was the mother of the author Rudyard Kipling.

Alice Kipling
Alice Kipling in 1870

Early years

Alice Kipling was born as Alice Caroline MacDonald in Sheffield, England in 1837, the first of the four daughters of Reverend George Browne MacDonald (1805–1868), a Wesleyan Methodist minister,[1] and Hannah Jones (1809–1875).[2][3][4][5][6]

In her youth Alice MacDonald wrote sonnets. She was described as:

"...slender, pale complexion, dark brown hair and grey eyes, with black lashes and delicately pencilled eyebrows. In those eyes lay the chief fascination of her face. So expressive were they that they seemed to deepen or pale in colour according to passing emotion .. it was impossible to predict how she would act at any given point. There was a certain fascination in this, and fascinating she certainly was..."[7]

Marriage and India

John Lockwood Kipling and Alice Kipling
John Lockwood Kipling and Alice Kipling in India in 1870

John Lockwood Kipling and Alice MacDonald met in 1863 and courted at Rudyard Lake in Rudyard, Staffordshire, England. They married in St Mary Abbots Church, Kensington on 18 March 1865 and moved to India later the same year. They had been so moved by the beauty of the Rudyard Lake area that when their first child was born they named him after it. Two of Alice's sisters married artists: Georgiana was married to the painter Edward Burne-Jones, and her sister Agnes to Edward Poynter. Kipling's most famous relative was his first cousin, Stanley Baldwin, who was Conservative Prime Minister three times in the 1920s and '30s.[8] He was the son of Alice's sister Louisa and her husband Alfred Baldwin.

Harry Ricketts in his biography of Rudyard Kipling wrote of Alice that she:

"...was lively, witty and talented; in a Jane Austen novel she would have been called accomplished. She wrote and published poems, arranged songs, sang and sewed and knew how to run a household. Her racy, gossipy letters captured acquaintances and social situations in phrases that flickered between mischief and malice. Frederic, her younger brother, thought her 'keen, quick and versatile' beyond anyone he had ever known. She 'saw things at a glance', he recalled, 'and dispatched them in a word'. Her poems showed another side, revealing a deep strain of melancholy..."[9]

In January 1865, John Lockwood Kipling was made Architectural Sculptor and Professor of Modelling at the School of Art and Industry in Bombay. Alice became the mother of Rudyard Kipling on 31 December 1865.[10] In Simla, Lord Dufferin once said, "Dullness and Mrs Kipling cannot exist in the same room."[11][12][13]

Later life

Church of St John the Baptist, Tisbury - - 1398200
Alice Kipling is buried beside her husband in the churchyard of St John the Baptist church in Tisbury in Wiltshire.

Alice Kipling and John Lockwood Kipling remained in India for many years, including during the period when their children were being educated in England. Alice Kipling published much less of her writing than did her sisters, but some of her poems were published in collections including Quartette (1885) and in Hand in Hand: Verses by a Mother and a Daughter (1901), the latter a collaboration with her daughter Alice Fleming (1868–1948).[14]

She died in November 1910, three days after suffering a heart attack[15] and is buried beside her husband in the churchyard of St. John the Baptist in Tisbury in Wiltshire, England.[16][17]

Alice Kipling features in the 2002 biography A Circle of Sisters: Alice Kipling, Georgiana Burne-Jones, Agnes Poynter and Louisa Baldwin by Judith Flanders.[18]


  1. ^ Ina Taylor. Victorian Sisters. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, London p6 1987 ISBN 029779065X
  2. ^ Taylor, Ina Victorian Sisters 1987 Weidenfeld & Nicolson p13 ISBN 029779065X
  3. ^ Judith Flanders, A Circle of Sisters (London, U.K.: Penguin Books, 2001), page xv-xvi
  4. ^ UK Census Returns. Public Records Office. Scanned Documents - Online (1841-1911) [] (n.p.:, unknown publish date), (1891)
  5. ^ "Wharfedale & Craven Genealogicial Study"; Ancestral File unknown repository, unknown repository address
  6. ^ Norman Page, A Kipling Companion, MacMillan Press, London (1984) - Google Books pg 28
  7. ^ Lycett, Andrew, Rudyard Kipling, Phoenix London (2000) pg 13
  8. ^ (13 January 2002). "did you know ..." The Retrieved 2 October 2006.
  9. ^ Harry Ricketts, Rudyard Kipling: A Life, Carroll & Graf Publishers, Inc. (1999)
  10. ^ Jill Berkiminez, (15 October 2013), Dictionary of Artists' Models, Routledge. pp. 91–. ISBN 978-1-135-95914-2
  11. ^ "The Life of Rudyard Kipling", Charles Carrington, 1955, p. 51.
  12. ^
  13. ^ The Long Recessional: The Imperial Life of Rudyard Kipling - David Gilmour - Βιβλία Google. Retrieved 2015-11-26.
  14. ^ Alice MacDonald Kipling: the Kiplings and India: A Collection of Writings from British India, 1870-1900
  15. ^ Rudyard Kipling: In Sickness and in Health - The Kipling Society database
  16. ^ Grave of Alice MacDonald Kipling on Find a Grave website
  17. ^ Photograph of the Inscription on grave of Alice Macdonald, Mrs John Lockwood Kipling (1837-1910), Tisbury, Wiltshire: 1950 - National Trust Collection
  18. ^ Judith Flanders, A Circle of Sisters: Alice Kipling, Georgiana Burne-Jones, Agnes Poynter and Louisa Baldwin, Penguin (2002) ISBN 978-0140284898

External links

Bagshot Park

Bagshot Park is a royal residence located near Bagshot, a village 11 miles (18 km) south of Windsor and approximately 11 miles (18 km) north west of Guildford (Grid reference: SU 9164). Owned by the Crown Estate, it is the current home of the Earl and Countess of Wessex. Bagshot Park is on Bagshot Heath, a fifty square-mile tract of formerly open land in Surrey and Berkshire. Bagshot Park occupies 21 hectares within the designated area of Windsor Great Park. It is only a few miles from Sunninghill Park, the former residence of the Duke and Duchess of York. The landscaped grounds are Grade II listed on the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.


Ballinamallard (from Irish Béal Átha na Mallacht, meaning 'ford-mouth of the curses') is a small village and townland in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. It had a population of 1,340 people in the 2001 Census. It lies to the north of Enniskillen and is situated within Fermanagh and Omagh district.

The village has won several "best kept village" titles, and has a fountain to mark the honour. There has been only one local primary school: Ballinamallard Controlled Primary School, since the other, Shanmullagh Primary School, closed in August 2008.

As of 2016 NISRA estimate that 2,754 people live in the Ballinamallard Electoral Ward

Edward Burne-Jones

Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, 1st Baronet (28 August 1833 – 17 June 1898) was an English artist and designer closely associated with the later phase of the Pre-Raphaelite movement, who worked closely with William Morris on a wide range of decorative arts as a founding partner in Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co. Burne-Jones was closely involved in the rejuvenation of the tradition of stained glass art in Britain; his stained-glass include windows in St. Philip's Cathedral, Birmingham, St Martin in the Bull Ring, Birmingham, Holy Trinity Church, Sloane Square, Chelsea, St Peter and St Paul parish church in Cromer, St Martin's Church in Brampton, Cumbria (the church designed by Philip Webb), St Michael's Church, Brighton, All Saints, Jesus Lane, Cambridge, St Edmund Hall and Christ Church, two colleges of the University of Oxford. His stained glass works also feature in St. Anne's Church, Brown Edge, Staffordshire Moorlands and St.Edward the Confessor church at Cheddleton Staffordshire.

Burne-Jones's early paintings show the heavy inspiration of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, but by the 1860s Burne-Jones was discovering his own artistic "voice". In 1877, he was persuaded to show eight oil paintings at the Grosvenor Gallery (a new rival to the Royal Academy). These included The Beguiling of Merlin. The timing was right, and he was taken up as a herald and star of the new Aesthetic Movement.

In addition to painting and stained glass, Burne-Jones worked in a variety of crafts; including designing ceramic tiles, jewellery, tapestries, and mosaics.

Emma Lazarus

Emma Lazarus (July 22, 1849 – November 19, 1887) was an American author of poetry, prose, and translations, as well as an activist. She wrote the sonnet The New Colossus in 1883, which includes "lines of world-wide welcome". Its lines appear inscribed on a bronze plaque on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty, installed in 1903, a decade and a half after Lazarus's death. The last stanza of the sonnet was set to music by Irving Berlin as the song "Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor" for the 1949 musical Miss Liberty, which was based on the sculpting of the Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World). The last stanza was also set by Lee Hoiby in his song "The Lady of the Harbor" written in 1985 as part of his song cycle "Three Women". Lazarus was also the author of Poems and Translations (New York, 1867); Admetus, and other Poems (1871); Alide: an Episode of Goethe's Life (Philadelphia, 1874); Poems and Ballads of Heine (New York, 1881); Poems, 2 vols. ; Narrative, Lyric and Dramatic; as well as Jewish Poems and Translations.

Georgiana Burne-Jones

Georgiana Burne-Jones, Lady Burne-Jones (Birmingham, 21 July 1840 – 2 February 1920), the second oldest of the Macdonald sisters, was the wife of Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood artist Edward Burne-Jones, mother of painter Philip Burne-Jones, aunt of novelist Rudyard Kipling, confidante and friend of William Morris and George Eliot, and something of a painter and engraver in her own right. She was a Trustee of the South London Gallery and was elected to the parish Council of Rottingdean, near Brighton in Sussex.

She is known for the biography of her husband, The Memorials of Edward Burne-Jones and for publishing his Flower Book. She became the mother-in-law of John William Mackail, who married her daughter Margaret. Their children were the novelists Angela Thirkell and Denis Mackail.

John Lockwood Kipling

John Lockwood Kipling (6 July 1837 – 26 January 1911) was an English art teacher, illustrator, and museum curator who spent most of his career in British India. He was the father of the author Rudyard Kipling.

Judith Flanders

Judith Flanders (born 1959) is a historian, journalist and author, who has settled in London, England. Her writings centre on the Victorian period.

King Street Methodist Chapel

King Street Methodist Chapel was a Wesleyan Methodist chapel in Derby, Derbyshire.

Kipling (disambiguation)

Rudyard Kipling (1865–1936) was a British author.

Kipling can also refer to

PeopleJohn Lockwood Kipling (1837–1911), father of Rudyard Kipling

Alice Kipling (1837–1910), mother of Rudyard KiplingPlaces

Kipling, Ohio, an unincorporated community in Center Township, Guernsey County, Ohio, United States

Kipling, Saskatchewan, a town in Saskatchewan

Kipling Airport, an airport near Kipling, Saskatchewan

Kipling Avenue, a street in Toronto and York Region

Kipling station, a station on the Toronto subway system

Kipling GO Station, a GO Train commuter rail station in Toronto

Colorado State Highway 391, also known as Kipling StreetOther

Mr Kipling, a brand of baked goods in the United Kingdom

Kipling House, a boarding house at Haileybury and Imperial Service College, a public school near Hertford, England

Harry Kipling, a character in 2000 AD, a British science-fiction comic

HMS Kipling (F91), a British K class destroyer named after the author and sunk in the Second World War

Rudyard Kipling (ship), British steam trawler sunk in 1939

Kipling (brand), Belgian bag brand

Kipling (crater), a crater on planet Mercury.

Bagheera kiplingi, a species of jumping spider

List of people from Sheffield

This is a list of notable people who were born in or near, or have been residents of the English city of Sheffield. Those born in Sheffield are listed in boldface.

Lucy Baldwin

Lucy Baldwin, Countess Baldwin of Bewdley, (née Ridsdale; 19 June 1869 – 17 June 1945) was an English writer and activist for maternity health. From 1892 until her death in 1945, she was the wife of Stanley Baldwin, three-time Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. She was invested as a Dame of Grace, Order of Saint John of Jerusalem and a Dame Grand Cross, Order of the British Empire, and styled as Countess Baldwin of Bewdley on 8 June 1937.

MacDonald sisters

The MacDonald sisters were four Scottish women of the Victorian era, notable for their marriages to well-known men. Alice, Georgiana, Agnes and Louisa were the daughters of Reverend George Browne Macdonald (1805–1868), a Wesleyan Methodist minister, and Hannah Jones (1809–1875).

Rudyard Kipling

Joseph Rudyard Kipling ( RUD-yərd; 30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936) was an English journalist, short-story writer, poet, and novelist. He was born in India, which inspired much of his work.

Kipling's works of fiction include The Jungle Book (1894), Kim (1901), and many short stories, including "The Man Who Would Be King" (1888). His poems include "Mandalay" (1890), "Gunga Din" (1890), "The Gods of the Copybook Headings" (1919), "The White Man's Burden" (1899), and "If—" (1910). He is regarded as a major innovator in the art of the short story; his children's books are classics of children's literature, and one critic described his work as exhibiting "a versatile and luminous narrative gift".Kipling was one of the most popular writers in the United Kingdom, in both prose and verse, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Henry James said: "Kipling strikes me personally as the most complete man of genius, as distinct from fine intelligence, that I have ever known." In 1907, at the age of 41, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, making him the first English-language writer to receive the prize and its youngest recipient to date. He was also sounded out for the British Poet Laureateship and on several occasions for a knighthood, both of which he declined.Kipling's subsequent reputation has changed according to the political and social climate of the age and the resulting contrasting views about him continued for much of the 20th century. George Orwell saw Kipling as "a jingo imperialist", who was "morally insensitive and aesthetically disgusting".

Literary critic Douglas Kerr wrote: "[Kipling] is still an author who can inspire passionate disagreement and his place in literary and cultural history is far from settled. But as the age of the European empires recedes, he is recognised as an incomparable, if controversial, interpreter of how empire was experienced. That, and an increasing recognition of his extraordinary narrative gifts, make him a force to be reckoned with."

Sophia Elizabeth De Morgan

Sophia Elizabeth De Morgan (1809–1892) was an English spiritualist writer and activist.

St Mary Abbots

St Mary Abbots is a church located on Kensington High Street and the corner of Kensington Church Street in London W8.

The present church structure was built in 1872 and designed by the celebrated architect Sir George Gilbert Scott, combining neo-Gothic and early-English styles. This edifice remains noted for having the tallest spire in London and is the latest in a series on the site since the beginning of the 12th century.

The church is listed Grade II* on the National Heritage List for England.

Tisbury, Wiltshire

Tisbury is a large village and civil parish approximately 13 miles (21 km) west of Salisbury in the English county of Wiltshire. With a population at the 2011 census of 2,253 it is a centre for communities around the upper River Nadder and Vale of Wardour. The parish includes the hamlets of Upper Chicksgrove and Wardour.

Tisbury is the largest settlement within the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (larger nearby settlements such as Salisbury and Shaftesbury are just outside it).

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