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Mary English (née Ballard, later Greenup)

(1789-1846), Adventurer and businesswoman

Sitter in 1 portrait
The adventurer and business woman Mary English first travelled to South America in 1819, when her husband raised a British legion of mercenaries to fight under Simón Bolívar. Mary tended sick soldiers, reviewed the troops and became friends with Bolívar. After her husband's death in September 1819 she stayed in South America, and her letters to England were reported in the London Weekly Dispatch and the Morning Chronicle. She visited England in 1822, but soon returned to Colombia as the commercial representative of the bankers Herring and Richardson. In 1827 she married William Greenup and bought a cacao plantation.

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Mary English (née Ballard, later Greenup), by William Armfield Hobday - NPG 6964

Mary English (née Ballard, later Greenup)

by William Armfield Hobday
oil on canvas, 1818
On display in Room 19 at the National Portrait Gallery
NPG 6964

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