Lady Sarah Forbes Bonetta Davies (photographed by Camille Silvy, 1862) She was born into a royal West African dynasty, and was orphaned in 1848, when she was around five years old, when her parents were killed in a slave-hunting war.
In 1850, Sarah was taken to England and presented to Queen Victoria as a “gift” from the King of Dahomey. She became the queen’s goddaughter and a celebrity known for her extraordinary intelligence. She spent her life between the British royal household and her country.
Sadly, she’d been in poor health for some time: she had tuberculosis, and died at the age of 37 in 1880. She was buried in Funchal Madeira.
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