Mrs Archibald Little

(1845—1926) author and campaigner against foot-binding

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(d. 1926) married (1886) Archibald John Little (1838–1908). Born in Madeira, she was married to a merchant who travelled widely in China between 1859 and 1907. Mrs Little states in Who's Who that she founded and organised the ‘Tien Tsu Hui, or Anti-foot-binding Society of China’. She was Vice-President of the Women's Conference at Shanghai in 1900. Her publications included editions of her husband's writings on China, fiction and non-fiction about China, journalism, and novels, including one, Mother Darling (1885), ‘written to establish the rights of mothers to their own children’. Flirts and Flirts, or, A Season at Ryde (1868) was her earliest work. In A Marriage in China (1899) a British consul wants to marry a missionary but has the problem of two children by a Chinese mistress. The Times obituarist (6 Aug. 1926) commented that it ‘attracted a good deal of attention in the Far East, owing to the identification of some of its characters with well-known residents, despite her energetic disclaimers’. Other works are Out in China! (1902) and A Millionaire's Courtship (1906), in which a good-looking, modest millionaire who distributes cheques for £500 as though they were ‘little bits of paper’ plans to develop the Chinese market, and falls in love with the long-legged daughter of the Consul-General, whom she worships, and whose high reputation as a wit raises hopes which are not fulfilled. Little is described by Harry Furniss in Some Victorian Women (1922).

From The Oxford Companion to Edwardian Fiction in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Literature.

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