Word of the Day – Monday, May 14th



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OONA (OO-nuh)

1. Oona O’Neill: Daughter of Eugene O’Neil and wife of Charlie Chaplin
2. Oona Chaplin: Spanish actress; granddaughter of Charlie Chaplin
clues: Mrs. Chaplin; Charlie's wife; Eugene O'Neill's daughter; Wife of “The Little Tramp”; “Game of Thrones” actress Chaplin ; Chaplin of “Game of Thrones”
Crossword puzzle frequency: 5 times a year
Illumination – The Chaplin-family

Oona O'Neill, Lady Chaplin (May 13, 1926 – September 27, 1991) was the daughter of Nobel and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Eugene O'Neill and his second wife, writer Agnes Boulton, and the fourth wife of actor Charlie Chaplin.

She had romantic relationships with satirical cartoonist Peter Arno and with the then 22-year-old author J. D. Salinger. To Salinger's disappointment, the relationship ended when she met British-born actor/director/producer Charlie Chaplin, after having been suggested for a role in his never-completed film Shadow and Substance.

Chaplin later wrote that he was immediately smitten by Oona's "luminous beauty" and "sequestered charm", and despite a thirty-six-year age difference, they were married in Carpinteria, California, on June 16, 1943, when he was fifty-four and she was eighteen.

For his part, Eugene O'Neill was so incensed at the union (he had refused to give his consent so that Oona could marry Chaplin before her eighteenth birthday), that he cut her out of his life, refusing all attempts by her at a reconciliation. According to Scovell, playwright Clifford Odets "saw something vindictive in O'Neill's behaviour and thought that O'Neill could not forgive Oona perhaps because he had abandoned her ..."

Chaplin and Oona had eight children: three sons, Michael (born in 1946), Eugene (born in 1953), and Christoper (born in 1962, when Chaplin was seventy-three), and five daughters, actress Geraldine Chaplin (born in 1944), Josie (born in 1949), Vicky (born in 1951), Jane (born in 1957), and Annie (born in 1959). Despite the size of their family, the temperamental Chaplin always insisted on being put first in Oona's life, and he was – often to the detriment of their children.

In March, 1975 – three years after briefly returning to the United States to receive a special Academy Award – Chaplin was knighted. He died on Christmas Day, 1977, at the age of eighty-eight.

In the years immediately following Chaplin's death, Oona lived in New York and attempted to create a life of her own. But after years of being continually on call to a demanding husband (her tasks were once described as being akin to those of a "duty nurse"), Oona – who had given up the promise of an acting career at the age of eighteen - returned to Switzerland and became more and more reclusive. She increasingly sought oblivion in the O'Neill "family curse" of alcoholism, and died of pancreatic cancer on September 7, 1991, at the age of 66.


Oona Castilla Chaplin (born 4 June 1986) is a Spanish actress. She is the granddaughter of English film star Charlie Chaplin and the great-granddaughter of American playwright Eugene O'Neill.

Oona Chaplin was born in Madrid. She is the daughter of British-American actress Geraldine Chaplin and Chilean cinematographer Patricio Castilla, and was named after her maternal grandmother, Oona O'Neill Chaplin. She spent her childhood mostly in Spain, England, Scotland, Switzerland, and Cuba, but also travelled often because of her mother's film career. She started dancing ballet, salsa and flamenco at an early age.

When Chaplin was fifteen, she began studying at Gordonstoun School in Scotland on a drama scholarship. During her time there, she appeared in several school plays, touring the United Kingdom in an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet and impersonating her grandfather in the role of Bottom in an adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream, which was performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. After leaving Gordonstoun, she was accepted to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, from which she graduated in 2007.

Since graduating from RADA, Chaplin has acted in mainly British and Spanish short and feature films. She has played alongside her mother in three feature films: Inconceivable, ¿Para qué sirve un oso? and Imago Mortis. Chaplin has also had several supporting roles in British and American television. In 2010, she appeared as a Brazilian cage dancer in ITV's Married Single Other (2010), followed by roles as the wife of one of the main characters, Hector Madden, in the BBC period drama The Hour (2011–2012), as Dr. John Watson's girlfriend in an episode of BBC's Sherlock (2012) and as Talisa Maegyr in HBO's Game of Thrones (2012–2013).

She played Kitty Trevelyan, a lead character, in the BBC drama The Crimson Field, which aired in 2014.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Oona Chaplin" and “Oona O'Neill”.