The Limes, Weybridge. Source: Ellis, following p. 60. This is where Meredith and his first wife Mary Ellen lived for several months after they first got married in 1849 (see Pulford 7-10 for a detailed discussion of the timing). It has been described as "a pleasant house with a large garden," run by a rather superior landlady:

Mrs Macirone (formerly Miss Elizabeth Williams, of Kew Green) was a woman of considerable culture and charm. She was the widow of Colonel Francis Macirone, A.D.C. to Murat, King of Naples, and a versatile man of inventive powers who was an early pioneer in the study of aviation. Mrs Macirone had two very beautiful daughters, who were, of course, half Italian. The elder, Emilia, as will be seen later, in some degree suggested to Meredith his Emilia Sandra Belloni [heroine of Merdith's Emilia in England, later re-titled Sandra Belloni, and its sequel Vittoria]. Miss Emilia Macirone became the wife of Sir Edmund Hornby, and was later the author of In and Around Stamboul during the Crimean War; and her sister Giulia married Major Albert Vaillant, of Meadowleigh, Weybridge. The Limes was an exceedingly pleasant abode for the Merediths, for Mrs Macirone and her daughters knew many interesting people, their guests including Bulwer Lytton; Tom Taylor; Eyre Crowe, A.R.A. ([1824-1910] Thackeray's secretary); Samuel Lucas, the journalist; and R. H. Home, the peculiar author of Orion and A New Spirit of the Age. (Ellis 61)

The house was later demolished. All that remains to remind us of it now is the name of Limes Road, Weybridge.

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Image scan and text by Jacqueline Banerjee. You may use the image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite it in a print one. [Click on the image for a larger picture.]


Ellis, S. M. George Meredith: His life and Friends in Relation to his Work. London: Grant Richards, 1920. Internet Archive. Contributed by Robarts Library, University of Toronto. Web 11 December 2015.

Pulford, J. S. L. George and Mary Meredith in Weybridge, Shepperton & Esher, 1849-61. Walton & Weybridge Local History Society, 1989.

Created 15 December 2015