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Janette Mary Fernie Ranken Thesiger (1877 – 21 May 1970) was an English actress who worked under the name of Juliet Hardinge. She was the wife of actor Ernest Thesiger and sister of the painter William Bruce Ellis Ranken.
Janette Mary Fernie Ranken was born in 1877, in a prosperous Edinburgh family, the daughter of Robert Burt Ranken (1840-1902) and Mary Witherington Dunlop. The painter William Bruce Ellis Ranken was her brother.
RRanken attended Oxford University where she met Margaret Jourdain. They moved together to London and lived together. But Ernest Thesiger, who knew Ranken since a lot time, proposed a white marriage to Ranken, and she accepted. She left Jourdain and on 30 May 1917 Janette Ranken married Ernest Thesiger. Hilary Spurling, biographer of Ivy Compton-Burnett, who was friend of Ernest Thesiger through Jourdain, suggests that Thesiger and Janette wed largely out of their mutual adoration of William, who shaved his head when he learned of the engagement. Ernest Thesiger does not mention Janette in his memoir, Practically True, even if they had a public life together, and Richard Thesiger, Ernest's nephew, said to Spurling that Janette Thesiger told him the marriage had never been consummated.
In the 1920s, Ranken was President of the West London Branch of the Theosophical Society. She was also Editor of the magazine Theosophy in the British Isles. She gave lectures like "The Web of Life" and "Some Problems of the Present". She was a member of the Psychical Research Society.
At her brother's death in 1941, Janette Ranken gifted over 200 works to be distributed amongst English public galleries and museums.
She died on 21 May 1970.
Janette Ranken, 1912, by Adolf de Meyer
Janette Ranken Thesiger by William Ranken, 1917
Janette Mary Fernie Ranken as Juliet Hardinge
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