Daphne Olivier

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Daphne Olivier
Daphne Olivier.jpg
Daphne Olivier
BornOctober 1889
DiedJuly 1950
Parent(s)
Relatives

Daphne Olivier (October 1889 - 14 July 1950) was the third daughter of the British politician Sydney Olivier, 1st Baron Olivier, and Margaret Cox; she was the sister of Margery (1886–1974), Brynhild (1887–1935) and Noël (1893–1969) and the first cousin of the actor Laurence Olivier (1907-1989). [1] [2] She established the first Rudolf Steiner school in England.

Sydney Olivier, 1st Baron Olivier British civil administrator, Fabian and Labour politician

Sydney Haldane Olivier, 1st Baron Olivier, was a British civil servant. A Fabian and a member of the Labour Party, he served as Governor of Jamaica and as Secretary of State for India in the first government of Ramsay MacDonald. He was the uncle of the actor Laurence Olivier.

Brynhild Olivier The second of four daughters of Sydney Haldane Olivier and Margaret Cox, and a member of Rupert Brookes Neopagans

Brynhild "Bryn" Olivier was the daughter of a Victorian English politician and one of four sisters noted for their progressive ideas, beauty and associations with both Rupert Brooke and his Cambridge circle of Neo-pagans, as well as the Bloomsbury Group. Born in Bloomsbury, London, Brynhild Olivier was raised and home schooled in Jamaica and Limpsfield, Surrey. Although she had no higher education, she became involved in cultural activities at Cambridge University, through her sisters, who were undergraduates there.

Noël Olivier British doctor. Youngest of the four Olivier sisters

Hon. Noël Olivier who trained and practised as a medical doctor, is now best known for her relationship with Rupert Brooke.

Contents

Biography

Daphne studied Medieval and Modern Languages at Newnham College, Cambridge and, together with her sisters Bryn and Noël, belonged to the circle around Rupert Brooke, that Virginia Woolf named the Neo-Pagans, [2] as well as forming part of the circle of friends of John Maynard Keynes. [3] Upon graduating in 1913, she became a teacher. Some years later, she became interested in the anthroposophical and educational work of Rudolf Steiner, possibly attending an educational conference he held in Stuttgart in 1922, as Owen Barfield claims. That same year she met both Owen Barfield and his close friend Cecil Harwood at a concert tour of the English Folk Dance Society, where she sang and played the fiddle. It was through her that they both became acquainted with Anthroposophy. [4]

Rupert Brooke British poet

Rupert Chawner Brooke was an English poet known for his idealistic war sonnets written during the First World War, especially "The Soldier". He was also known for his boyish good looks, which were said to have prompted the Irish poet W. B. Yeats to describe him as "the handsomest young man in England".

Virginia Woolf English modernist writer known for use of stream of consciousness

Adeline Virginia Woolf was an English writer, considered one of the most important modernist 20th-century authors and also a pioneer in the use of stream of consciousness as a narrative device.

John Maynard Keynes English economist

John Maynard Keynes, 1st Baron Keynes, was a British economist whose ideas fundamentally changed the theory and practice of macroeconomics and the economic policies of governments. He built on and greatly refined earlier work on the causes of business cycles, and was one of the most influential economists of the 20th century. Widely considered the founder of modern macroeconomics, his ideas are the basis for the school of thought known as Keynesian economics, and its various offshoots.

She approached Rudolf Steiner for support in starting a Waldorf School in England, gathered a group of three other women and, on being advised by Steiner to include also a male teacher, asked her friend Harwood to join. The school, called at the time “The New School” was founded in 1925 in South London. It later moved to Forest Row in East Sussex and was renamed Michael Hall. [5] She and Cecil Harwood were married on 14 August 1925 and the couple subsequently had five children. [1] Besides her work as a teacher, Daphne translated a number of Steiner's works into English.

Rudolf Steiner Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, economist and esotericist

Rudolf Joseph Lorenz Steiner was an Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, economist and esotericist. Steiner gained initial recognition at the end of the nineteenth century as a literary critic and published philosophical works including The Philosophy of Freedom. At the beginning of the twentieth century he founded an esoteric spiritual movement, anthroposophy, with roots in German idealist philosophy and theosophy; other influences include Goethean science and Rosicrucianism.

Forest Row village in East Sussex, United Kingdom

Forest Row is a village and relatively large civil parish in the Wealden District of East Sussex, England. The village is located three miles (5 km) south-east of East Grinstead.

East Sussex County of England

East Sussex is a county in South East England. It is bordered by the counties of Kent to the north and east and West Sussex to the west, and to the south by the English Channel.

Harwood was a friend of C.S. Lewis and Owen Barfield, a fellow follower of Steiner. Lewis was a frequent visitor to the couple’s home in London and became godfather to their son Laurence. She died in 1950 of cancer.

Arthur Owen Barfield was a British philosopher, author, poet, critic, and member of the Inklings.

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Edith Olivier British writer

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Michael Hall is an independent Steiner Waldorf school in Kidbrooke Park on the edge of Ashdown Forest in East Sussex. Founded in 1925, it is the oldest Steiner school in Britain, it has an enrolment of over 500 students aged between three (Kindergarten) and eighteen.

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Phyllis Gardner British author

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Katherine Laird Cox member of the Bloomsbury set

Katherine Laird ("Ka") Cox (1887–1938), the daughter of a British socialist stockbroker and his wife, was a Fabian and graduate of Cambridge University. There, she met Rupert Brooke, becoming his lover, and was a member of his Neo-Pagans. She was also a friend of Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group. During World War I she worked with the Serbian Relief Fund, assisting refugees in Corsica. After the war, she married the Labour politician Will Arnold-Forster, and became the first woman magistrate in Cornwall. She and her husband were instrumental in founding Gordonstoun School in Scotland in 1934. Her sudden death at the age of 51 fueled speculation of involvement in the occult.

References

  1. 1 2 The Peerage
  2. 1 2 Paul Delany. The Neo-Pagans - Friendship and Love in the Rupert Brooke Circle. (1987 Macmillan London) p.230.
  3. Maynard Keynes: An Economist's Biography by Donald Edward Moggridge Routledge 1992 ISBN   978-0-415-05141-5, P. 213
  4. Owen Barfield: Romanticism Comes of Age : A Biography - Simon Blaxland-de Lange. Temple Lodge Publishing 2006 P.91
  5. Alfred Cecil Harwood

Bibliography

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