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The BBC's Rosie Millard
"The embodiment of old fashioned romance"
 real 28k

Novelist Jilly Cooper
"She was fun"
 real 28k

Monday, 22 May, 2000, 02:06 GMT 03:06 UK
Tributes to Dame Barbara
Dame Barbara with Douglas Fairbank Jnr
An eye for romance: Dame Barbara with Douglas Fairbanks Jnr
Tributes have been paid to the romantic novelist, Dame Barbara Cartland, who has died at the age of 98.

She was a wise old duck. She thrived on a good fight and a good argument

Novelist Jilly Cooper
Her son Ian McCorquodale said she had recently been ill and that she died in her sleep at home in Hertfordshire.

Dame Barbara wrote more than 700 novels in 70 years. Her books were translated into 36 languages and sold an estimated one billion copies.

Known as the "Queen of Romance", Dame Barbara had strict views on unmarried women protecting their virginity.

But her fellow novelist Jilly Cooper said she never despaired that her views seemed out of fashion:

"I think she was a wise old duck. I think she thrived on a good fight and a good argument.

"I think she was saddened and I think she was outraged occasionally - she believed virginity was the answer to all problems, but I think that was her stance and she was going to stick to it."

Dame Barbara, whose daughter, Raine was the stepmother of Diana, Princess of Wales, wrote on average a novel each fortnight.

She lived a full and fulfilling life, which touched many people around the world

Son Ian McCorquodale
She appeared in the Guinness Book of Records as the world's most prolific novelist.

Mr McCorquodale said: "She had a wonderful life. I think that she will be remembered as a writer of wonderful romance books that brought so much joy to so many people.

"She lived a full and fulfilling life, which touched many people around the world."

'Brought gaiety to nation'

Dame Barbara wrote about pure love with no sex and a happy ending where the beautiful, innocent heroine and the tall handsome hero got married and lived happily ever after.

I think she added to the gaiety of the nation.

Lord St John of Fawsley
She had two sons and a daughter, six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Mr McCorquodale added: "She was always available for love and counsel for them all.

"She was a character who was larger than life and a legend in her own time.

"Her style, glamour and vitality can never be repeated and she will always be remembered for her love of pink.

"She will be sadly missed by those who knew and loved her and by her millions of fans and readers around the world."

Lord St John of Fawsley, Dame Barbara's friend for 40 years, said: "I think she added to the gaiety of the nation.

"She was scribbling away right up to the end."

In 1991 she became a Dame of the Order of the British Empire for her contribution to literature and her work for humanitarian and charitable causes.

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21 May 00 | UK
The grand dame of romance
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