Janet Ann Ross

Janet Ann Ross
Other names
née Duff Gordon
Birth and death
1842 - 1927
Profession details
Traveller, Author
Related place
Alistair Grant

Janet Ann Ross [née Duff Gordon], (1842-1927), traveller and author. The daughter of Alexander and Lucie Duff Gordon, and granddaughter of John and Sarah Austin. Soon after moving from London to Esher in the early 1850s, the Duff Gordons hired a German governess, Fraulein von Zeschau, and was sent to Germany and France to learn languages. George Meredith, a friend of her parents, fell deeply in love with her, and portrayed her as Rose Jocelyn in his novel 'Evan Harrington' of 1860. The same year she met Henry James Ross (1820-1902), and invited him to Esher, where they rode together, and she accepted his proposal of marriage, despite his twenty years' seniority. They lived in Egypt and later Florence, Italy, where she became part of the Anglo-Florentine literary world. In 1888 she published 'Three Generations of Englishwomen', a multi-biography of her mother (Lucie Duff Gordon), grandmother (Sarah Austin), and great-grandmother (Susannah Taylor), and a sequel 'The Fourth Generation: Reminiscences' about her own life in 1912.

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