Doris Lessing, a winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature and the author of the classic The Golden Notebook, has died at the age of 94.

A spokesman said that the author passed away at her London home in the early hours of Sunday.

Born in Persia (modern day Iran) in 1919, Doris Lessing grew up in Southern Rhodesia before emigrating to London after the Second World War.

Her first novel, The Grass Is Singing, was published in 1950 and during her career she produced over 50 works, including poetry, two operas, short stories, plays and non-fiction.

In 2007, she became the oldest recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature, aged 88.

Jonathan Clowes, her longtime friend and agent, said: "She was a wonderful writer with a fascinating and original mind; it was a privilege to work for her and we shall miss her immensely."

Paying tribute, Nicholas Pearson, her editor at HarperCollins, said: "Doris's long life and career was a great gift to world literature.

"She wrote across a variety of genres and made an enormous cultural impact. Probably she'll be most remembered for The Golden Notebook which became a handbook to a whole generation, but her many books have spoken to us in so many various ways.

"Doris has been called a visionary and, to be in her company, which was a privilege I had as her editor towards the end of her writing life, was to experience something of that.

"Even in very old age she was always intellectually restless, reinventing herself, curious about the changing world around us, always completely inspirational. We'll miss her hugely."