Lilian Jane Gould

  (Redirected from Lilian J. Veley)

Lilian Jane Gould (1861–1936), also known as Lilian J. Veley, was a British biologist mainly known for her studies of microorganisms in liquor. She was one of the first women admitted to the Linnaean Society. Apart from her scientific work, she was one of the first European breeders of Siamese cats.

Lilian Jane Gould
First admission of lady Fellows to the Linnean Society of London.jpg
The first admission of women as fellows of the Linnean society in 1905, Lilian J. Veley (Gould) is shown signing the membership book – from a painting by James Sant (1820–1916)
Born(1861-02-19)19 February 1861
Died2 December 1936(1936-12-02) (aged 75)
Alma materSomerville College, Oxford
Spouse(s)Victor Herbert Veley
AwardsFellow of the Linnean Society
Scientific career
FieldsNatural Sciences


Lilian Jane Gould was born on 19 February 1861, to Katharine Emma Gould and the Rev. J. Nutcombe. She attended Somerville College, Oxford on a scholarship, where her adviser was the entomologist Edward Bagnall Poulton.[1] In 1894 she obtained a First Class degree in Natural Sciences, with a specialisation in animal morphology.[1] In 1895 she married Victor Herbert Veley (1856–1933), a scientist and businessman with whom she would later collaborate on several research projects.[2][3] Like other Oxford University women scientists of the era who were barred from obtaining a doctorate at Oxford, she later received a D.Sc. degree from Trinity College, Dublin (1905).[4][5]

In 1904, she became one of the first women elected to the Linnean Society of London.[6]

During World War I, Gould served as the commandant of a London unit of the British Red Cross.[1]

Her husband died in 1933 and Gould died on 2 December 1936.[3] An obituary was published in the Proceedings of the Linnaean Society.[7]


Gould wrote her first two scientific papers while still at Oxford University; one was on colour in the larvae of lepidoptera, while the other was on an amoeba, Pelomyxa palustris.[1]

Veley was a scientist and the director of the Baddow Brewery Company, and Gould worked with him on microorganisms found in liquors such as rum.[3] With Veley, she published several brief papers on the subject in Nature and elsewhere, as well as a book entitled The Micro-Organism of Faulty Rum (1898).[1][8] Her husband's obituary opined that the book had received less attention than it deserved.[3]

Cat breedingEdit

Gould also played a part in the early history of the modern breed of Siamese cat, becoming one of the first western Siamese breeders. In 1884, her brother Edward, who was Consul-General in Bangkok, brought a breeding pair of the cats back home as a gift for his sister. Gould's pair, named Pho and Mia, produced three Siamese kittens, and all five attracted attention the following year at the annual cat show at London's Crystal Palace. Gould would go on to co-found the Siamese Cat Club in 1901.[9][10]

Some photographs of other types of cats owned by Gould are held in the UK National Archives.[11][12] She also interviewed in 1910 a family in Putney who owned a cat claimed to have been stolen from a Japanese temple of which cats were traditional guards.[13]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e Creese, Mary R.S. (1998). Ladies in the Laboratory? American and British Women in Science, 1800–1900: A Survey of Their Contributions to Research. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press. pp. 109, 372, 407. ISBN 9780585276847. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  2. ^ General Register Office Register of Marriages SEP 1895 5b 217 NEWTON A. Victor Herbert Veley = Lilian Jane Gould
  3. ^ a b c d Gardner, J. A. (1 December 1934). "Victor Herbert Veley. 1856–1933". Obituary Notices of Fellows of the Royal Society. 1 (3): 228–235. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1934.0007. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  4. ^ Parkes, Susan M. A Danger to the Men? A History of Women in Trinity College Dublin 1904–2004, 2004.
  5. ^ Trinity College (Dublin, Ireland) (1905). The Dublin University Calendar. p. 102. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  6. ^ Proceedings of the Linnean Society of London, 1904.
  7. ^ Marilyn Ogilvie; Joy Harvey (16 December 2003). The Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science: Pioneering Lives From Ancient Times to the Mid-20th Century. Taylor & Francis. pp. 2340–1. ISBN 978-1-135-96342-2.
  8. ^ Veley, Lilian J.; Veley, Victor H. (1898). The Micro-Organism of Faulty Rum. London: Henry Frowde. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  9. ^ "Edward Blencowe Gould or Owen Gould". Archived from the original on 11 March 2005. Retrieved 16 March 2016.
  10. ^ Connor, Janine. I Am Siamese: How to Raise Siamese Cats and Kittens, 2007.
  11. ^ ""Photograph, orange Persian cat, 'Ginger'." Copyright owner and author of work: Mrs Lilian Jane Veley, 20 Bradmore Road, Oxford". British National Archives. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  12. ^ ""Photograph, silver-grey Persian kitten 'Toddie'." Copyright owner and author of work: Mrs Lilian Jane Veley, 20 Bradmore Road, Oxford". British National Archives. Retrieved 19 March 2016.
  13. ^ Howey, M. Oldfield (1930). The Cat in Magic and Myth. Courier Corporation. pp. 134–5. ISBN 978-0-486-43114-7.