Gertrude Bell (1868 - 1926) was an English writer, traveler, political officer, administrator, and archaeologist. Many refer to her as the most powerful woman in the British Empire in her day. She spent most of her time in or working with countries in the Middle East, including participating in archaeological digs and also numerous important diplomatic matters.
Notably, she was one of the only figures in Britain that had a contemporary knowledge of the Middle East during World War I. As such, she influenced government thinking during the time period. Among other accomplishments, she was also a very important figure in the nation-building of what would
become the Kingdom of Iraq.
She was also a prolific writer, writing about her travels and experiences and also translated a book of Persian poetry. G. Bell struggled psychologically at times and was found to have died in 1926 of what is believed by some to be suicide.
G. Bell and Vernon Lee had several mutual friends, including Eugenie Sellers Strong.