Mary Bennett
Get Mary Bennett essential facts below. View Videos or join the Mary Bennett discussion. Add Mary Bennett to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
Mary Bennett

Mary Letitia Somerville Bennett (9 January 1913 – 1 November 2005) was a British academic, best known for her tenure as Principal of St Hilda's College, Oxford between 1965 and 1980.

Born Mary Letitia Somerville Fisher, she was the daughter of historian H. A. L. Fisher and Lettice Fisher, the founder of the National Council for the Unmarried Mother and her Child. She was educated at Oxford High School. She obtained her first degree (in Classics) from Somerville College, Oxford, and then studied abroad, researching the grain supply of ancient Rome. During the Second World War she worked for the British Ministry of Information and for the BBC, and after the war went into the Colonial Office with responsibility at various times for Gibraltar, Malta and Cyprus. In 1955, she married senior civil servant John Sloman Bennett, who would be happy to take a back seat when she took over as Principal of St Hilda's from Kathleen Major.

In retirement, she wrote up her researches into family history. St Hilda's commissioned Jean Cooke to paint a portrait of its principal.[1][2]


  • The Ilberts in India, 1882-1886: an Imperial Miniature. London: British Association for Cemeteries in South Asia. 1995.
  • Who was Dr Jackson? Two Calcutta Families, 1830-1855. London: British Association for Cemeteries in South Asia. 2002. ISBN 978-0-907799-78-8.
  • Mary Bennett: an Autobiography. Oxford: St Hilda's College. 2006.


  1. ^ "Jean Cooke". The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group Limited. 22 August 2008. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ "Your Paintings: Jean Cooke paintings slideshow". Art UK. Retrieved 2014.

Further reading

  • Brown, Hilda (19 November 2005). "Mary Bennett". The Independent. Retrieved 2016.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes