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Rupert Murdoch tells of ‘good smacking’ at mother’s funeral


Rupert Murdoch and his wife, Wendy Deng, walked past rows of mourners at St Paul’s Cathedral in Melbourne for the funeral of the media mogul’s late mother, Dame Elisabeth, yesterday.

The owner of News Corporation told those gathered in the grand neo-gothic cathedral in Australia’s second city that his mother, who died earlier this month at the age of 103, lived life “always in full bloom”.

Often described as a matriach leading the Murdoch clan, Dame Elisabeth was a keen disciplinarian, Mr Murdoch said. “I still remember, vividly, the good smacking I got for pulling my big sister Helen’s pigtails,” he added, provoking some light laughter.

Among those in the congregation was the comedian Barry Humphries and the former Australian prime minister John Howard.

Mr Murdoch and his wife were led from the catherdral by the Premier of Victoria state, Ted Baillieu, who carried an array of flowers including yellow and pink roses named after Dame Elisabeth.