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The Hon Mary Colville (1922-1981) was the daughter of the Rt Hon John Colville MP (1894-1954), Baron Clydesmuir, who stood as a Scottish Unionist. Mary was part of a tranche of young authors who wrote pony books. Hers is one of the longer examples of the genre, though it follows the usual autobiography-of-a-pony plot. Plain Jane is the story of Blaese, a Shetland pony, and was illustrated by the author, who apparently had never had a drawing lesson but produced some pretty credible artwork nevertheless. The episodes described in the book which involve ponies were true.


Mary Colville married Captain North Edward Frederick Dalrymple-Hamilton of Bargany, and under her married name of Mary Dalrymple Hamilton, wrote As Lovely As A Tree. A Pictorial Album Illustrating The Many Common Trees In The Old Scottish Garden Of Bargany, Ayrshire.


Finding the book: reasonably easy to find though pricing can be erratic.


Sources and links

Dustjacket of Plain Jane

John Colville

The Peerage

Mary Colville


Plain Jane, the Story of a Shetland Pony

Collins, London, 1938, 158 pp. Illus the author

A review of the book


Blaese is a Shetland pony, and this is the story of her and the herd to which she belongs.
The ponies are rounded up and broken in, and Blaese moves on through several different
homes and owners

Bibliography - pony books only