Countess Ilona (Lilly) Karolina Edelsheim-Gyulai de Marosnémethi et Nádaska was born 14 January 1918 in Budapest, Hungary to Lipót Edelsheim-Gyulai (1888-1981) and Gabriella Pejacsevich (1894-1977) and died 18 April 2013 Lewes, East Sussex, England, United Kingdom of unspecified causes.

Countess Ilona Edelsheim-Gyulai de Marosnémethi et Nádaska (14 January 1918 – 18 April 2013)[1][2] was a Hungarian noblewoman and wife of István Horthy, son of Regent Miklós Horthy and Deputy Regent of Hungary for a short time in 1942.


She was born in Budapest, the third daughter of Count Lipót Edelsheim-Gyulai and Gabriella Pejacsevich (Croatian: Gabriela Pejačević). She spent her childhood in Felsőelefánt (today: Horné Lefantovce, Slovakia), the family's estate in Upper Hungary. She married István Horthy in April 1940. Their only son, István Horthy, Jr. was born in 1941. Her husband died in an unexplained airplane crash over the Eastern Front in August 1942. In 1954 she married Colonel John Wallace Guy Bowden of the Queen's Own Hussars; during the early 1960s they lived in Baghdad, where Bowden was a British military attaché, and in the 1980s they moved to Portugal. Bowden died in 2002.

She worked as a nurse for the Red Cross during the Second World War. She also had a role in rescuing Jews. After the unsuccessful desertion attempts and Operation Panzerfaust, she emigrated with her father-in-law, the Regent. She wrote her memoir with the title of Becsület és kötelesség ("Honor and Duty"). She lived in the United Kingdom until her death at Lewes, aged 95.



Offspring of Ilona Edelsheim-Gyulai and István Horthy (1904-1942)
Name Birth Death Joined with
István Horthy (1941) 17 January 1941 Budapest, Hungary Henrietta Josephine Chamberlain (1932)



Footnotes (including sources)


NAME Edelsheim-Gyulai, Ilona
DATE OF BIRTH 14 January 1918
PLACE OF BIRTH Budapest, Austria-Hungary
DATE OF DEATH 8 April 2013
PLACE OF DEATH Lewes, England\
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