The Woman Who Stole Vermeer: The True Story of Rose Dugdale and the Russborough House Art Heist

The Woman Who Stole Vermeer: The True Story of Rose Dugdale and the Russborough House Art Heist

by Anthony M. Amore

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Overview

The extraordinary life and crimes of heiress-turned-revolutionary Rose Dugdale, who in 1974 became the only woman to pull off a major art heist.

In the world of crime, there exists an unusual commonality between those who steal art and those who repeatedly kill: they are almost exclusively male. But, as with all things, there is always an outlier—someone who bucks the trend, defying the reliable profiles and leaving investigators and researchers scratching their heads. In the history of major art heists, that outlier is Rose Dugdale.

Dugdale’s life is singularly notorious. Born into extreme wealth, she abandoned her life as an Oxford-trained PhD and heiress to join the cause of Irish Republicanism. While on the surface she appears to be the British version of Patricia Hearst, she is anything but.

Dugdale ran head-first towards the action, spearheading the first aerial terrorist attack in British history and pulling off the biggest art theft of her time. In 1974, she led a gang into the opulent Russborough House in Ireland and made off with millions in prized paintings, including works by Goya, Gainsborough, and Rubens, as well as Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid by the mysterious master Johannes Vermeer. Dugdale thus became—to this day—the only woman to pull off a major art heist. And as Anthony Amore explores in The Woman Who Stole Vermeer, it’s likely that this was not her only such heist.

The Woman Who Stole Vermeer is Rose Dugdale’s story, from her idyllic upbringing in Devonshire and her presentation to Elizabeth II as a debutante to her university years and her eventual radical lifestyle. Her life of crime and activism is at turns unbelievable and awe-inspiring, and sure to engross readers.


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781643135304
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publication date: 11/10/2020
Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 11,230
File size: 9 MB

About the Author

Anthony Amore is Director of Security and Chief Investigator at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, where he is charged with the ongoing efforts to recover thirteen works of art stolen from the museum on March 18, 1990. Additionally, he is the co-author of Stealing Rembrandts (a Wall Street Journal bestseller) and author of The Art of the Con (a New York Times bestseller) and provides analysis on issues related to security and terrorism for the BBC, NBC News, NPR, CNN, FOX, and others. He lives in Boston, MA. Learn more at www.anthonyamore.com.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Revolutionary Rose Dugdale 1

1 The Reluctant Debutante 11

2 A Weird Orchid Among Daisies 23

3 A Soixante-Huitard 37

4 Graduation 51

5 The Cause 59

6 Wally 75

7 Stealing Home 91

8 Enter Eddie 109

9 The Bombing at Strabane 117

10 The Intersection 129

11 The Guitar Player 139

12 The French Visitor 159

13 Proudly and Incorruptibly Guilty 179

14 A New Life on the Inside 199

15 Love and Marriage 213

16 The Afterlife 225

Epilogue 231

Author's Note 235

Bibliography 237

Endnotes 241

Acknowledgments 261

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