FIRST IMPRESSIONS / Dora Black on Bertrand Russell

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The Independent Culture
'I remember looking at his curious profile: it was so like the Mad Hatter, with his hair blowing in the wind. I think it was then I fell in love with him, really'

Dora Black met Betrand Russell in 1916 when a student friend from Girton, who knew Russell, asked her to make up a foursome with Russell's pupil Jean Nicod for a walking weekend, writes Catriona Luke. Dora was an undergraduate and Russell, twenty years her senior, was lecturer in Philosophy at Trinity. It was another three years before their relationship properly blossomed and even in 1919 during a three-month holiday at Lulworth Cove in Dorset, Russell wrote to Ottoline Morrell that Miss Black was 'nice' but thought it unlikely that he would 'take up with her'. They married in 1921 when Russell's divorce from his first wife Alys came through. Dora recalled her first impression of Russell in conversation with Bel Mooney.