British Women Writers

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Throughout history, there have been many British women writers who have made significant contribution to the field. The list includes many familiar and great British female writers such as J. K. Rowling, Joan Collins, Jane Austen, Julie Andrews, Agatha Christie.
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 1 
J. K. Rowling
(Author of Children's Fantasy Series, 'Harry Potter')
J. K. Rowling
140
Birthdate: July 31, 1965
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Yate, England

JK Rowling’s story is that of rags-to-riches. She is the author of the Harry Potter fantasy series, which have sold more than 500 million copies and is the best-selling book series in history. She also writes crime fiction albeit under a pen name. Rowling supports many charities and has founded Lumos, an international NGO, working for children.

 2 
Agatha Christie
(English Author Known for Her Detective Novels and Short Stories)
Agatha Christie
30
Birthdate: September 15, 1890
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Torquay, Devon, England
Died: January 12, 1976

Even after four decades after her death, Agatha Christie remains an influential figure in the world of literature and entertainment as most of her books continue to serve as inspiration to films, TV series, and video games. With over two billion copies of her novels sold, she holds the Guinness World Records for best-selling fiction writer of all time.

 3 
Jane Austen
(English Author Best Known for Her Novels: ‘Sense and Sensibility’, ‘Pride and Prejudice’, ‘Mansfield Park’ and ‘Emma’)
Jane Austen
35
Birthdate: December 16, 1775
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Steventon, Hampshire, England, United Kingdom
Died: July 18, 1817

Considered one of the greatest writers in English history, Jane Austen is best known for her six major novels - Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Persuasion and Northanger Abbey. Her writing was set among the British landed gentry and dealt with ordinary people in everyday ordinary situation. The author achieved great fame after her death. 

 4 
Virginia Woolf
(One of the Most Important Modernist 20th-Century Authors)
Virginia Woolf
23
Birthdate: January 25, 1882
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Kensington, London, England
Died: March 28, 1941

Virginia Woolf was an English writer who pioneered a narrative mode called stream of consciousness to describe the thoughts and feelings of the narrator. Regarded as one of the most prominent modernist 20th-century writers, Woolf's works have gained much attention for inspiring feminism. Her life and work have inspired several films, novels, and plays.

 5 
Mary Shelley
(British Author Best Known for Her Gothic Novel ‘Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus’)
Mary Shelley
16
Birthdate: August 30, 1797
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Somers Town, London, England
Died: February 1, 1851
An author who was admired for her exploration of the Gothic genre, Mary Shelley is best remembered for her novel Frankenstein. She also edited the works of her husband, Romantic poet P.B. Shelley. She lost her husband to a drowning accident and eventually passed away due to brain tumor.
 6 
Charlotte Bronte
13
Birthdate: April 21, 1816
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Thornton, Yorkshire, England
Died: March 31, 1855
Charlotte Bronte, remembered for her iconic novel Jane Eyre, was one of the most significant literary figures of the 19th century. She was the eldest of the Bronte sisters who survived into adulthood. She and her sisters Emily and Anne wrote under the pseudonyms Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell.
 7 
George Eliot
(English Novelist, Poet and One of the Leading Writers of the Victorian Era)
George Eliot
6
Birthdate: November 22, 1819
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Warwickshire, England
Died: December 22, 1880

Mary Ann Evans, known by her pseudonym George Eliot, was an English poet, novelist, translator, and journalist. One of the most prominent writers of the Victorian era, Eliot's works are known for their psychological insight, realism, and detailed description of the countryside. Her novel Middlemarch was voted one of the greatest literary works in a 2007 poll conducted by Time.

 8 
Emily Brontë
(Novelist)
Emily Brontë
9
Birthdate: July 30, 1818
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Thornton, West Yorkshire
Died: December 19, 1848
Victorian novelist/poet Emily Brontë, also known as Ellis Bell, is best remembered for her iconic novel Wuthering Heights. Her book of poems, written with her sisters Charlotte and Anne, was titled Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell, highlighting their pseudonyms. She suffered from prolonged illness and died of tuberculosis.
 9 
Mary Wollstonecraft
10
Birthdate: April 27, 1759
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: September 10, 1797

Mary Wollstonecraft was an English writer, advocate of women's rights, and philosopher. Wollstonecraft, who attracted a lot of attention for her unconventional personal relationships, is widely considered a founding feminist philosopher. Although her unorthodoxy initially attracted criticisms, her advocacy of women's equality became increasingly important during the 20th century. Modern-day feminists cite her works and her life as important influences.

 10 
Phoebe Waller-Bridge
(Actress and Screenwriter Best Known as the Creator, Head Writer of the BBC Sitcom ‘Fleabag’)
Phoebe Waller-Bridge
6
Birthdate: July 14, 1985
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, England

Phoebe Waller-Bridge is credited with creating and writing one of the greatest TV series of the 21st century, Fleabag. She is also famous for contributing as the executive producer and head writer of another highly-acclaimed TV series, Killing Eve. In 2020, she was named in Time magazine's list of 100 most influential people in the world.

 11 
Mary Berry
(Food Writer, TV Presenter)
Mary Berry
7
Birthdate: March 24, 1935
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bath, Somerset

Author of over 75 cookbooks, Mary Berry has also hosted several culinary shows, such as Mary Berry Cooks. The Guardian ranked her the second-best-dressed person over 50. A CBE and DBE recipient, she has also received the Guild of Food Writers Lifetime Achievement Award and an honorary degree.

 12 
Lucy Hawking
(Journalist, Novelist, Writer)
Lucy Hawking
6
Birthdate: November 2, 1970
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: England
Lucy Hawking, daughter of legendary physicist Stephen Hawking, has been a journalist with New York Magazine, The Times, and The Telegraph. She has also authored several children's books, such as George's Secret Key to the Universe. She is the VP of National Star College and also works for autism research.
 13 
Jane Hawking
(Writer)
Jane Hawking
4
Birthdate: March 29, 1944
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: St Albans, Hertfordshire, England

Jane Hawking is an English teacher and author. She is best known as the ex-wife of popular physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking. She was married to Hawking for 30 years, during which she doubled up as his caretaker. Jane Hawking took good care of Stephen Hawking despite struggling from depression, for which she is much-respected in the scientific community.

 14 
Beatrix Potter
6
Birthdate: July 28, 1866
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kensington
Died: December 22, 1943
Born into an affluent English family, Beatrix Potter grew up amidst nature and developed a love for animals. She grew up to be a natural scientist, conservationist, and illustrator, and is best remembered for her children's books such as The Tale of Peter Rabbit, which featured animals.
 15 
Sophie Hunter
(Theatre Director)
Sophie Hunter
6
Birthdate: March 16, 1978
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hammersmith, London

Sophie Hunter is an English playwright, opera director, and former performer. She is credited with co-founding and popularizing a theatre company called Boileroom, which was honored with the Samuel Theatre Trust Award in 2007 for its play The Terrific Electric, which marked Sophie Hunter's directorial debut.

 16 
Daphne du Maurier
(English Novelist, Biographer and Playwright)
Daphne du Maurier
6
Birthdate: May 13, 1907
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: April 19, 1989

Daphne du Maurier was an English playwright and author. Many of her works, which have been praised for narrative craft, have been adapted into films, including three of Alfred Hitchcock's movies. Such was her popularity that she was selected along with four other Women of Achievement to be featured on a set of British stamps, which were issued in 1996.

 17 
Enid Blyton
(Best Selling Children's Writer of the 20th Century Known for Her Works 'Malory Towers' & 'The Famous Five')
Enid Blyton
5
Birthdate: August 11, 1897
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: East Dulwich, London, England
Died: November 28, 1968
Author Enid Blyton is best remembered for her iconic children’s book series such as Famous Five, Malory Towers, and Secret Seven, majorly focusing on mystery-based plots. Her works have made her the fourth-most-translated writer. She had supported animal and paediatric charities. Her story inspired the BBC film Enid.
 18 
Caroline Aherne
(Actress Best Known for Her Performance as ‘Mrs Merton’ in the Mock Talk Show ‘The Mrs Merton Show’)
Caroline Aherne
5
Birthdate: December 24, 1963
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Ealing, London, England
Died: July 2, 2016
BAFTA-winning comedian Caroline Aherne is remembered for her portrayal of the character Mrs. Merton on various shows, such as Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show and The Mrs Merton Show. Fans also loved her as Denise Royle in the sitcom The Royle Family and as a narrator on Gogglebox. 
 19 
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
(English poet of the Victorian era, best known for her 'Sonnets From the Portuguese' and 'Aurora Leigh.)
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
6
Birthdate: March 6, 1806
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Kelloe, Durham, England
Died: June 29, 1861
 20 
Pippa Middleton
(English Socialite, Author, Columnist and Younger Sister of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge)
Pippa Middleton
7
Birthdate: September 6, 1983
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Reading, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom
Philippa Charlotte Matthews, better known as Pippa Middleton, is the younger sister of Kate Middleton, or Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. She soared to fame after appearing as the maid of honor at Kate’s wedding to Prince William. She is a columnist and editor and has also authored a book.
 21 
Jackie Collins
(Novelist)
Jackie Collins
7
Birthdate: October 4, 1937
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: London, England, UK
Died: September 19, 2015
 22 
Anne Lister
(English Diarist)
Anne Lister
4
Birthdate: April 3, 1791
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Halifax, West Yorkshire, England
Died: September 22, 1840

Apart from being a traveler and a mountaineer, Anne Lister was also known as the world’s "first modern lesbian". Nicknamed Gentleman Jack for her androgynous fashion, which almost always included the color black, she penned diaries that contained many secret codes that were deciphered much after her death.

 23 
Geri Halliwell
12
Birthdate: August 6, 1972
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Watford

Geri Halliwell is a British singer-songwriter who achieved international fame as part of the popular girl group, The Spice Girls, which has sold more than 85 million records worldwide. Also a well-known philanthropist, Geri Halliwell has worked closely with the United Nations Population Fund, becoming its goodwill ambassador in 1998. She is widely regarded as a girl power icon.

 24 
Mary Seacole
(Heroine of the Crimean War)
Mary Seacole
4
Birthdate: November 23, 1805
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kingston, Jamaica
Died: May 14, 1881

Mary Seacole was a British-Jamaican nurse, businesswoman, and healer. She played a major role during the Crimean War, providing aid for wounded servicemen and nursing them back to health. In 1991, Seacole was posthumously honored with the Jamaican Order of Merit. In 2004, she was named the greatest black Briton for her contribution during the war.

 25 
Doris Lessing
(Novelist)
Doris Lessing
4
Birthdate: October 22, 1919
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kermanshah, Iran
Died: November 17, 2013
 26 
Nadiya Hussain
(British Celebrity Chef and Winner of the Sixth Season of 'The Great British Bake Off')
Nadiya Hussain
7
Birthdate: December 25, 1984
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Luton, Bedfordshire, England

Nadiya Hussain is a British TV chef, television presenter, and author. She is best known for winning the sixth series of The Great British Bake Off. Over the years Nadiya Hussain has become a household name in the UK by hosting shows like Nadiya's Family Favourites. In 2017, she was mentioned in Debrett's' 500 most influential people in the UK list.

 27 
Peaches Geldof
(British Model, Television Personality and Writer for the UK Edition of ‘Elle Girl’ Magazine)
Peaches Geldof
7
Birthdate: March 13, 1989
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Westminster, London, England
Died: April 7, 2014
Peaches Geldof, daughter of singer Bob Geldof and TV presenter Paula Yates, wrote for publications such as Elle Girl and The Guardian. She later presented her own TV shows, such as Peaches Geldof: Teen America, and modeled. Geldof was a Scientologist. She died of a heroin overdose at age 25.
 28 
Emerald Fennell
5
Birthdate: October 1, 1985
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Hammersmith, London, England, UK
 29 
Zadie Smith
(Writer, Novelist, Essayist)
Zadie Smith
6
Birthdate: October 25, 1975
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London

Author Zadie Smith was born in London to a British father and a Jamaican mother. Her bestselling debut novel, White Teeth, won numerous awards and catapulted her to fame, while her third novel, On Beauty, was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. She has also taught fiction at New York University.

 30 
Carol Ann Duffy
4
Birthdate: December 23, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Glasgow, Scotland
 31 
Christina Rossetti
(Poet, Writer, Hymnwriter)
Christina Rossetti
5
Birthdate: December 5, 1830
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London
Died: December 29, 1894
 32 
Rachel Khoo
5
Birthdate: August 28, 1980
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Croydon, United Kingdom

Renowned British cook Rachel Khoo was born to a Malaysian Chinese father and an Austrian mother. Trained at the Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, she started her own restaurant at her small Belleville apartment. She later gained fame for her cookbook and her BBC series named The Little Paris Kitchen.

 33 
Sara Pascoe
(Comedian)
Sara Pascoe
7
Birthdate: May 22, 1981
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Dagenham, London, England

Born to musician Derek Pascoe, comedian Sara Pascoe was raised by her mother amid poverty after her parents’ divorce. Initially a tour guide, she later stepped into comedy and never looked back. She is known for shows such as 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown and Twenty Twelve.

 34 
Nigella Lawson
(Television Personality, Gourmet, Food Writer)
Nigella Lawson
11
Birthdate: January 6, 1960
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: London, United Kingdom
Daughter of Nigel Lawson, former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Nigella Lawson has written several bestselling cookbooks and hosted many culinary shows. Winner of the British Book Award and the Guild of Food Writers Award, Nigella has previously worked as an editor and freelance journalist and also owns a cookware range.
 35 
Darcey Bussell
(One of the Best British Ballerinas of All Time)
Darcey Bussell
6
Birthdate: April 27, 1969
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London

Darcey Bussell is an English former ballerina best known for her appearances as a judge on the popular television show, Strictly Come Dancing. She is also known for her association with the Royal Ballet, where she was a principal dancer. Darcey Bussell is considered one of the best British ballerinas of all time and is the recipient of numerous awards.  

 36 
Gertrude Bell
(Writer, Diplomat)
Gertrude Bell
8
Birthdate: July 14, 1868
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Washington, United Kingdom
Died: July 12, 1926

Born into a wealthy English family, Gertrude Bell was an explorer at heart and went down in history for her journeys across the Middle East and for helping establish the Hāshimite dynasty in Iraq. Though she graduated in history from Oxford, being a woman, she wasn’t awarded a degree.

 37 
Iris Murdoch
(Irish & British Novelist Best Known for Her Novels: 'Under the Net', 'The Sea, the Sea' and 'The Bell')
Iris Murdoch
4
Birthdate: July 15, 1919
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: February 8, 1999

One of the most popular Irish-born British novelists, Iris Murdoch is remembered for her psychological novels, which had a good dose of sexuality, philosophy, morality, and comic elements. While she won the Booker Prize for The Sea, the Sea, the Oxford alumnus had also worked for the HM Treasury and the UN.

 38 
Sarah Ferguson
(Author, Producer and Former Wife of Prince Andrew, Duke of York)
Sarah Ferguson
12
Birthdate: October 15, 1959
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Marylebone, London, England

Sarah Ferguson is one of the members of the British royal family. She started working with several charity organizations after marrying Prince Andrew, Duke of York. Even after her divorce, she has continued working with organizations like the American Cancer Society. In 2020, she set up her own foundation called Sarah's Trust.

 39 
Sheila Hancock
5
Birthdate: February 22, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Blackgang, Isle of Wight, England, UK
 40 
Elizabeth Gaskell
3
Birthdate: September 29, 1810
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Chelsea, England
Died: November 12, 1865
Princess Michael of Kent
5
Birthdate: January 15, 1945
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Karlovy Vary

Princess, Michael of Kent, is one of the members of the British royal family. Princess Michael, who is of Hungarian, Austrian, and German noble descent, worked as an interior designer before shifting her focus towards writing. Having held a long time fascination for cheetahs, Princess Michael serves as a patron for Namibia's Cheetah Conservation Fund

 42 
Kerry Katona
(Actor, Television presenter, Singer, Writer, Autobiographer)
Kerry Katona
5
Birthdate: September 6, 1980
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Warrington
 43 
Frances Hodgson Burnett
3
Birthdate: November 24, 1849
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cheetham, Manchester, England
Died: October 29, 1924
 44 
Sophie Dahl
(Author, Model, Writer)
Sophie Dahl
4
Birthdate: September 15, 1977
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London
 45 
Katharine Gun
(Linguist)
Katharine Gun
5
Birthdate: 1974 AD
Birthplace: Taiwan, Taiwan
 46 
Anne Brontë
(Writer)
Anne Brontë
6
Birthdate: January 17, 1820
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Thornton, West Yorkshire
Died: May 28, 1849
 47 
Anne Perry
(Author of Historical Detective Fiction, Best Known for Her 'Thomas Pitt' and 'William Monk' Series)
Anne Perry
6
Birthdate: October 28, 1938
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Blackheath, London, England

Juliet Hulme, better known as Anne Perry, is the bestselling author of the widely popular William Monk and Thomas Pitt series of novels. She changed her name after a 5-year sentence for killing her friend’s mother at age 15. She has also worked as a flight attendant.

 48 
Tess Daly
(Model and Co-Presenter of the BBC One Celebrity Dancing Show 'Strictly Come Dancing')
Tess Daly
4
Birthdate: March 29, 1969
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Stockport, England
Tess Daly is best known for presenting shows such as This Time Tomorrow and Strictly Come Dancing. After being scouted outside a McDonald's outlet, she began modeling and took up assignments in Tokyo, London, and Paris. She has also written two books and appeared in Duran Duran music videos.
 49 
Jill Gascoine
(Known for Her Role of 'Detective Inspector Maggie Forbes' in the TV Series ‘The Gentle Touch’)
Jill Gascoine
4
Birthdate: April 11, 1937
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lambeth, London, England
Died: April 28, 2020

Actor and novelist Jill Gascoine is best remembered for her role as Detective Inspector Maggie Forbes in the series The Gentle Touch and its spin-off, C.A.T.S. Eyes. She wrote three novels and also appeared in films such as King of the Wind. She was also a kidney cancer survivor.

 50 
Vera Brittain
4
Birthdate: December 29, 1893
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Newcastle Under Lyme, Staffordshire, England
Died: March 29, 1970