Emily Sophia Harding, 77, died peacefully at home in Rhinebeck on Sunday, September
8th 2019. Born on December 28th 1941, in London, England, she was the daughter of the
late Philip Harding and Alice Astor Pleydell-Bouverie. Emily grew up in New York City and
in Rhinebeck with her brother Ivan Obolensky and her sisters Sylvia Guirey (nee
Obolensky) and Romana McEwen (nee von Hofmannsthal). In 1963 she married the
architect Michael Zimmer, son of the Indologist Heinrich Zimmer. Their son Jacob was
born in 1967.
Later she married Eric Glanbard. Then, after a particularly long and happy engagement,
she married the artist Clark Murray in 2017. An accomplished horse rider and trainer, Emily
was a strong presence at the Southlands Foundation, the renowned Rhinebeck horse
riding school. She was a natural scholar, and in later life she returned to school and threw
herself with characteristic determination into studies: after gaining her master's degree as
a special student at Vassar College, she was accepted into a PhD program at Columbia.
She relished her work under the mentorship of Professor David Cannadine, and enjoyed
several months spent intently researching at the British Library in London. After the
completion of her dissertation, titled Political Thought in the British Caribbean, 1750-1785,
she received her doctorate in 2007, an achievement which gave her enormous pleasure
and of which, although she wouldn't admit it, she was justifiably proud. Sweet, loyal,
generous and with a wry sense of humor, she will be greatly missed. Her son Jacob
predeceased her in 1990. She is survived by her husband Clark.
There will be a private interment in the Astor family plot.
Memorial donations may be made in Emily's memory to Southlands Foundation
southlands.org or Hudson Valley Hospice hvhospice.org
Arrangements are under the direction of Burnett & White Funeral Homes 91 E. Market St.,
To sign the online guest book, please visit www.Burnett-White.com
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91 East Market StreetRhinebeck, NY12572