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Ann Ford Thicknesse

(b. Feb. 22, 1737, Temple, City of London – d. Jan. 20, 1824, Edgware Road, Edgware, London )

Gender: F

Ann Ford (1737-1824) was the daughter of Thomas Ford, and obtained an unusually good education. She could speak five languages, had a fine singing voice, and was a skilled performer on the lute and viola da gamba. She performed to audiences in her home, and in 1760, against her father’s wishes, gave a series of subscription concerts. On 27 September 1762, she became the third wife of Philip Thicknesse, and they had one son. She and her husband were travelling to Italy in 1792 when Thicknesse died suddenly in Boulogne, and his wife was arrested and confined in the convent of the Ursulines. Following the execution of Maximilien Robespierre in July 1794, she was released under a general pardon for prisoners who could demonstrate that they could earn their living: her ability as a musician won her release. In 1788 she published Sketches of the Lives and Writings of the Ladies of France, a three-volume work which she dedicated to Elizabeth Carter.

Also known as:

  • Ann Thicknesse (née  Ford)

Please note that all dates and location information are provisional, initially taken from the library and archive catalogues. As our section editors continue to work through the material we will update our database and the changes will be reflected across the edition.