The Duchess of Berwick represents one of those women in the Victorian era British society who thrives on gossip and is a hypocrite. She plays an important role in the play, as she is the one to bring to Lady Windermere's notice in the first act that her husband is paying extragavant sums of money to another woman. Her views on society and men give us a good insight into the mentality of the people of that era.
Yes absolutely. She is a humourous character that contributed to Wildes message of portraying grave matters through wit. In Act One she says "crying is the refuge of plain women but the ruin of pretty ones" which is a good insight on what Victorian society thought. Do women hold an inferior place compared to men?
Also, as for looks I think she is rather a ridiculous character, so I would definetly picture her with an extravagant feather and ribbon laden hat!