NESTA BEVAN was born in a stately home in Trent Park and was the youngest daughter of Robert Bevan, close friend of Cardinal Manning; her mother was the daughter of Bishop Shuttleworth of Chichester. Nesta was educated at Westfield College under the austere Miss Maynard. On coming of age she travelled round the world, to India, Burma, Singapore, and Japan, in those leisurely, inexpensive days. In India she met and married Captain Arthur Webster, the Superintendent of the English Police. Settling down in England she commenced to write, and a strong literary obsession overcame her that she had lived in eighteenth-century France. Like the "Ladies of Versailles", the more she read about the French Revolution the more she remembered ! Her first serious book on this subject was The Chevalier de Boufflers, which fascinated Lord Cromer to judge by his long review in The Spectator. Deeper and deeper she sank into the literature of the Revolution, spending over three years at the British Museum and the Bibliothèque Nationale. After the first World War she was asked to give a lecture on the Origin and Progress of World Revolution to the officers of the Royal Artillery at Woolwich. By special request she repeated the lecture to the officers and non-commissioned officers of the Brigade of Guards in Whitehall, and then she was asked to repeat it a third time to the officers of the Secret Service, and it was at their special request that she wrote World Revolution, based on these lectures. Her charm and brilliance enabled her to captivate some of the leading literary, political and military minds of her day, and Lord Kitchener in India described her as the "foremost opponent of subversion".
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