April 8, 2013 / 2:52 PM / 6 years ago

FACTBOX-Margaret Thatcher in the words of enemies and friends

LONDON, April 8 (Reuters) - Here are some quotes about former British Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher who died on Monday at the age of 87:

“She has the eyes of Caligula but the mouth of Marilyn Monroe” - then French President Francois Mitterrand.

“The great She-Elephant - she has an impenetrably thick hide, she is liable to mount charges in all directions and she is always thinking on the trot” - Denis Healey, opposition Labour member of parliament and former finance minister.

“Isn’t she marvellous” - former U.S. Republican President Ronald Reagan.

Reagan again: “This great lady has not only served her country well, she has served the free world well. She is truly a great statesman. So much so that I’ll correct what I just said: She is a great stateswoman holding her own among all the statesmen of the world.”

“We gradually developed personal relations that became increasingly friendly. In the end, we were able to achieve mutual understanding, and this contributed to a change in the atmosphere between our country and the West and to the end of the Cold War” - former Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

“She was always an attractive woman. She had not merely a film star’s attractiveness; she could also behave like a film star when she chose to do so” - Sir Bernard Ingham, her press secretary.

“Mrs Thatcher tells us she has given the French President a piece of her mind... not a gift I would receive with alacrity” - Denis Healey again, in 1989.

“If Margaret Thatcher wins on Thursday, I warn you not to be ordinary, I warn you not to be young, I warn you not to fall ill, I want you not to be old” - Labour leader Neil Kinnock before the 1983 election in which she won a second term.

“This woman is headstrong, obstinate and dangerously self-opinionated” - Anonymous 1948 in a report on Margaret Roberts (her maiden name) by the personnel department of a large chemicals firm, rejecting her job application.

“She carried the cult of the individual much too far and has done us terrible damage in Europe with her fishwife yelling and screaming” - fellow Conservative MP Nicholas Soames.

“Everyone likes to win arguments. She likes to win them more than most” - William Whitelaw, her Deputy Prime Minister 1985.

Reporting by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit

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