Naomi Jacob was a celebrated novelist who also wrote a series of autobiographical works.
Her paternal grandfather was a Jewish tailor who had escaped the pogroms of Western Prussia and settled in England. Her maternal grandfather was the two-time mayor of Ripon in Yorkshire, England.
She loved the theatre and became a character actress on stage and in film, notably opposite John Geilgud in The Ringer (1936). She also associated with the Du Mauriers, Henry Irving, Marie Lloyd and Sarah Bernhardt. At 18 she became secretary, and lover, of music hall star Marguerite Broadfoote.
Naomi Jacob published her first novel, Jacob Usher in 1925. It became a bestseller.
After suffering with tuberculosis, in 1930 she left England for Italy, where she lived for most of the rest of her life.
Naomi Jacob: A Life in Words, covers significant events from Naomi Jacob’s life, taken from her own autobiographical writing, edited by me. Her words are read by actor Jill Stanford. Here is a summary of each episode:
Episode 1: A Yorkshire Childhood
Episode 2: Behind the Curtain: The World of the Music Hall
Episode 3: Acting in Plays to Political Activism
Episode 4: From Elstree to Mussolini’s Italy
You can also hear the series below.