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Very tall by all accounts.

A stature so great that she seemed of a divine race.’  W.B. Yeats, Memoirs (pg 40).

But nonetheless, I was taken aback by a statement in a recent Irish Times review of Adrian Frazier’s excellent new biography ‘The Adulterous Muse‘ that Maud was ‘6ft 5in’ tall! Frazier’s biography in fact states that she was ‘six feet two inches’ (pg 5), but this is unreferenced. Later in the book, Frazier quotes a French society journalist (pg 126) that Maud is ‘…huge, she measures at least 1.85m (6ft 1in), which is equivalent to the size of a fine policeman.’

I’m sure somewhere, in Gonne’s police records perhaps, there is an objective record of her height (being the nationalist firebrand that she was, she was arrested at least twice by the DMP and the Free State).

Maud Gonne at Howth Station waiting a train/Pallas Athena in that straight back and arrogant head.’  W.B. Yeats, ‘Beautiful Lofty Things’, New Poems (1938).

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