Oscar Wilde, Aldous Huxley and Edith Wharton all came to visit her. Henry James and Mario Praz frequented her salons. English writer Vernon Lee welcomed them all. For 46 years, at her villa, Il Palmerino, Lee ‘held court' for a vast network of Anglo-American and Florentine writers, artists, scientists, politicians and intellectuals who were attracted to her critical interpretations on Italian art and her keen-minded conversations. One of the greatest modern exponents of supernatural fiction, Lee established her reputation as a writer while in her early 20s. She authored 40 books throughout the course of her life and carved out a place for herself as an advocate of feminism and of social reform. She was truly a woman ahead of her time.