A few reasons why Lillie Langtry was a badass:

  • Her governess couldn’t handle her, so she was educated by her brothers’ tutor, which enabled her to get a better education than most women of her time
  • She was so beautiful, witty and charismatic that she got famous just by showing up at a dinner party
  • She became so wildly famous and obsessed over simply for being herself that her effect was referred to as the Langtry Phenomenon
  • She charmed the pants off of royals galore, having affairs with Prince Louis of Battenberg, the Earl of Shrewsbury, and the future King Edward VII, who had a mansion built for her which she designed herself
  • When she lost favor and nearly went bankrupt, she reinvented herself as an actress and played to full houses every time she appeared
  • Her complexion alone was so great that she made money off it by appearing in ads for Pears soap, making her one of the first ever celebrity product endorsers
  • She became a successful businesswoman, with her own theatre company, a winery in America, and a stable of racehorses

This was a lady who started out with nothing. She knew what she wanted, so she went out and made it happen. She’s one of my personal heroes. I highly suggest picking up one of the books about her, especially her autobiography. She was an incredible character.