Catherine Peters

Feminist Fatale

The Criminal Conversation of Mrs Norton

By

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Caroline Norton should have been a lawyer: she addressed the challenges of her unhappy life with a keen forensic mind and a command of rhetoric that a leading QC might have envied. Instead, born out of her time, she became the most reviled and notorious woman in England when her husband brought an action against the prime minister, Lord Melbourne, for having ‘criminal conversation’ with his wife. 

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