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Jean Rhys
Also known as Gwen Williams, Vivien, Emma and Ella Gray, Ella Lenglet, Ella Hamer

Ella Gwendolen Rees Williams
24th August, 1890
Cork Street, Roseau, Dominica


Novelist, short story writer, essayist


Dr. William Potts Rees Williams and Minna Williams née Lockhart

Minna, Owen, and two others

Willem Johan Marie Lenglet (1889–1961), 1919–32 divorced
Leslie Tilden Smith (?–1945), 1934–45 died
George Victor Max Hamer (?–1966), 1947–66 died

William Owen (Lenglet) (1919, died at 3 weeks) and Maryvonne (Moerman-Lenglet née Lenglet) (1922–2000)


Convent of the Faithful Virgin, Roseau, Dominica
1907–08 Perse School, Cambridge, England
1909 Tree's School (now the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts), London, England


1909 Chorus girl in the show Our Miss Gibbs, under the name Ella Gray (1909–10)
1910 Artist model
19? Volunteer worker in WWI soldiers' canteen
1918 Worked in a pension office


1927 The Left Bank and Other Stories, Jonathan Cape publishers
1928 Postures (Quartet: A Novel, USA 1929, Simon & Schuster),
1931 After Leaving Mr Mackenzie, Jonathan Cape publishers
1932 Barred by Edward De Nève, Desmond Harmsworth publishers; translated and edited by Rhys
1934 Voyage in the Dark, Constable
1939 Good Morning, Midnight, Constable
1966 Wide Sargasso Sea, André Deutsch publishers
1968 Tigers Are Better-Looking, André Deutsch publishers
1969 Short story published in Penguin Modern Stories 1, Penguin Books
1975 My Day: Three Pieces, F. Hallman
1976 Sleep It Off, Lady, André Deutsch publishers
1979 Smile Please: An Unfinished Autobiography, André Deutsch publishers
1984 Jean Rhys Letters 1931–1966, Penguin Books Australia Ltd, published posthumously
Jean Rhys: Early Novels, Deutsch publishers
1985 Jean Rhys: The Complete Novels, Norton
Tales of the Wide Caribbean, Heinemann, published posthumously
1987 Jean Rhys: The Collected Short Stories, Norton, published posthumously

1924 Viennepublished in the transatlantic review
Goodbye Marcus, Goodbye Rose
The Day They Burned the Books
1962 Let Them Call it Jazz
1971 The Saddest Story
1962 Let Them Call it Jazz


1966 W.H Smith Award for Writers, Wide Sargasso Sea
Heinemann Award of the Royal Society of Literature, Wide Sargasso Sea
Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature
1978 Made Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)


Good Morning, Midnight was adapted for a theatrical production in 1949 by Selma Vaz Dias; the adaptation was broadcasted as a radio play for BBC radio in 1957.
Wide Sargasso Sea was named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels since 1923
There have been three adaptations of Wide Sargasso Sea: 1993 film adaptation produced by New Line Cinema; 1997 contemporary opera adaptation produced by Chamber Made; 2006 television adaptation produced by Kudos Film & Television for BBC Four.


14th May, 1979
Exeter, England