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Former British PM Thatcher comes home from hospital

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • She was hospitalized for two weeks after catching the flu
  • Thatcher, known as "the Iron Lady," was prime minister from 1979 to 1990
  • Now 85, she has largely retired from public life

London, England (CNN) -- Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, 85, returned home Monday after being hospitalized for two weeks with the flu.

She was admitted to a hospital October 19, officials said.

At the time she went into the hospital, a Downing Street spokesman told reporters, "We understand from Lady Thatcher's office that she's been admitted to hospital for precautionary tests following her recent bout of flu." The spokesman then added that Prime Minister David Cameron "wishes Lady Thatcher a speedy recovery."

Thatcher had to miss a reception at Downing Street held to mark her 85th birthday because she had the flu.

Thatcher, who was prime minister between 1979 and 1990, is known as the "Iron Lady," for her personal and political toughness.

She was Britain's first -- and so far only -- female prime minister, and the only one to win three consecutive terms in the 20th century.

She largely retired from public life after a stroke in 2002.