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Author and Columnist Alice-Leone Moats Dead at 81

May 16, 1989

PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Alice-Leone Moats, an author and columnist for The Philadelphia Inquirer who settled here after a career abroad that included coverage of World War II, has died at age 81.

Miss Moats, known among friends as ″Moatsie,″ died Sunday at Graduate Hospital. She had been ill with heart disease and other ailments.

The author of nine published books and hundreds of magazine articles, she devoted much of the last 12 years to her weekly column, which was syndicated.

She developed a wide following for her witty, often cutting commentary.

″She could really bring the saber out and put it to good use,″ said Phil Joyce, editor of the Inquirer’s commentary page. ″She had people looking for that column every week. I knew. When we didn’t run it, I would hear. I think a lot of people looked at her as a lovable sort of cranky person.″

Born in Mexico to American parents, Miss Moats grew up a privileged only child and early in her career became known as an expert on courtesy.

Her 1933 book, ″No Nice Girl Swears,″ a practical guide to etiquette for young girls, became a best-seller when it was published and was reissued 50 years later.

She arrived in Moscow in 1941 as a correspondent for Collier’s magazine, and went to Spain in 1943 as a correspondent for Collier’s, the New York Herald Tribune and CBS.

She continued to work abroad until 1974, when she returned to the United States and eventually settled in Philadelphia.

Miss Moats had no survivors in her immediate family.

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