Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Sarah, Duchess of York
Sarah, Duchess of York (born 15 October 1959) is the former wife of Prince Andrew, Duke of York. She was born as Sarah Margaret Ferguson, and due to her maiden name is often referred to as "Fergie". During her marriage she was formally styled Her Royal Highness The Duchess of York, and became Sarah, Duchess of York upon her divorce, although this style would lapse if she remarried.
Sarah is a daughter of Major Ronald Ivor Ferguson and his first wife, Susan Mary Wright. Though widely referred to as a commoner, which in the strictest sense is true, the Duchess comes from an aristocratic background. She is a great-great-granddaughter of the 6th Duke of Buccleuch, a great-granddaughter of the 8th Viscount Powerscourt, a direct descendant of William the Conqueror, and a stepgranddaughter of Air Marshal Sir Thomas Elmhirst . Through her paternal grandmother, Lady Elmhirst (née Marian Montagu-Douglas-Scott), she also is a distant cousin of the late Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester, an aunt of Queen Elizabeth II.
She married HRH The Prince Andrew, Duke of York, on July 23, 1986, and they had two daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie, before divorcing in 1996. Despite their divorce, the couple remain close and live together with their children. Her romances -- including those with her one-time American financial advisor, John Bryan , and a Tuscan aristocrat, Count Gaddo della Gherardesca -- have kept her in the gossip columns as frequently and as prominently as her business endeavors and personal candor.
Since her divorce, Sarah has hosted her own talk show, although this did not meet with a great deal of success. She has done fund-raising for children's charities most notably as the official US spokesperson for the international charity SOS Children's Villages.
She is also an author: her writings include an autobiography, some guides to dieting, and several books for children. Most notable in the latter category is her series of children's books about a helicopter named Budgie. The plot, style and illustration of the first Budgie book was remarkably similar to an existing children's book, Hector the Helicopter by Arthur W. Baldwin. "It is difficult for us to say that anything has been literally copied," wrote Jane Moore, group legal adviser of Reed International Books in a letter, "but if this was not a major source of inspiration for the Budgie books then it is a remarkable coincidence"1. Reed International did not pursue a claim for copyright infringement.
Titles from birth
Here is a list of Sarah, Duchess of York's styles in chronological order.
- Miss Sarah Ferguson
- Her Royal Highness The Duchess of York
- Sarah, Duchess of York
- Budgie: The Little Helicopter
- Budgie: At Bendick's Point
- Budgie Goes To Sea
- Budgie And The Blizzard
- The Royals by Kitty Kelley (Chapter 17)
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