See caption
Lady Mary Isabel Portman in a Clément car, from The Car Illustrated, January 1903
Wikimedia Commons

The Car Illustrated. A Journal of Travel by Land, Sea, and Air was a British weekly automobile magazine founded in 1902 by John Walter Edward Douglas-Scott-Montagu, 2nd Baron Montagu of Beaulieu (1866–1929), who acted as its editor.[1] Montagu retained ownership of the magazine for fourteen years, but made a profit in only five of those years.[2]

Montagu employed a secretary, 22-year-old Eleanor ThorntonInspiration for the Rolls-Royce flying lady mascot., to help him run the magazine, and soon entered into a secretive romantic relationship with her. The magazine’s illustrator, Charles Sykes, used Eleanor as the model for the Rolls-Royce Spirit of Ecstasy bonnet mascot.[3]



Griffiths, Dennis. “Montagu of Beaulieu, Second Baron, John Walter Edwards Douglas-Scott-Montagu.” The Encyclopedia of the British Press, 1422–1992, Macmillan Press, 1992.
Patton, Phil. “ROLLS-ROYCE SPIRIT: Carmaker Celebrates Centennial of Its Flying Lady Ornament.” Autoweek, vol. 61, no. 7, 4 Apr. 2011.
Storey, Richard A. “Montagu, John Walter Edward Douglas-Scott-Montagu, Second Baron Montagu of Beaulieu (1866–1929).” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Online, Oxford University Press, 2004,