Connery's first wife accuses him of bullying

The former wife of Sean Connery has accused the Oscar-winning actor of physically and mentally bullying her during their 11-year marriage.

The former wife of Sean Connery has accused the Oscar-winning actor of physically and mentally bullying her during their 11-year marriage.

Writing in her forthcoming autobiography, Diane Cilento, who was divorced from Connery in 1973, also claims the actor found it hard to cope with the superstardom his role as James Bond brought him in the 1960s.

Australian actress Cilento says: "There was physical contact. Sean came from a Scottish working-class background and wasn't able to cope with the fame James Bond brought him.

"He changed, as did our relationship. It wasn't all his fault. He was not protected by the Bond people. We both coped badly with his fame."

Cilento, 71, also claims Connery, 75, was resentful of her acting success.

She adds: "I got an Oscar nomination for Tom Jones in 1963, but this didn't please Sean.

"To outsiders I was probably the most envied person in the world being married to him, but it was quite uncomfortable, because if a man has got into a position of being a sort of macho icon, he's being merchandised as that."

Connery who has always denied abusing Cilento, once said in an infamous 1993 Vanity Fair interview: "Sometimes there are women who take it to the wire.

“That's what they're looking for, the ultimate confrontation. They want a smack."

Cilento's autobiography is due to be released next spring.

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