Born: November 4, 1925;

Died: April 17, 2016

DORIS Roberts, who has died aged 90, was an award-winning actress who became well-known for her matriarchal roles on television in the 1980s, but she reached the peak of her fame in 1996 with one particular role: the manipulative, interfering, mother on the sit-com Everybody Loves Raymond.

The success of the show came late in Roberts’ life – she was already in her seventies when the series began in 1996 – and after it finished nine seasons later, she worried that she would not work again; in fact, just a few weeks ago, she spoke about her concern about the lack of good roles for older actors.

She need not have worried though, as she continued to work regularly and had been fit and healthy before her death in her sleep of natural causes. In all, she appeared in more than 30 films and her appearances on television included Desperate Housewives, the hospital drama St Elsewhere and the 1980s detective series starring Pierce Brosnan Remington Steele.

Born in St Louis, she was raised by a single mother in the Bronx and began her stage career on Broadway in the 1950s, beginning with Time of Your Life in 1955 and amassing credits that eventually included Neil Simon's The Last of the Red Hot Lovers and Terrence McNally's Bad Habits.

She also worked extensively in television comedy, appearing on the Mary Tyler Moore show and the Lily Tomlin Special in 1975, and film, including the 1974 thriller The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3. Her early TV appearances also included episodes of Studio One, The Naked City and The Defenders and her recurring role as the receptionist in Remington Steele began in 1984. She was also a regular on St Elsewhere in 1982, a role for which she won her first Emmy the following year.

She won another four Emmy awards for her portrayal of Marie Barone on Everybody Loves Raymond and received a total of seven nominations as best supporting actress for the show. The sit-com, which ran from 1996 to 2005, also starred Ray Romano, Brad Garrett and Patricia Heaton. Peter Boyle, who played husband Frank to Roberts' Marie, died in 2006.

An enthusiastic cook, in 2005 Roberts co-wrote Are You Hungry, Dear? Life, Laughs, And Lasagna, which was a memoir mixed with recipes.

Roberts had been married to the novelist William Goyen for 22 years until his death from leukaemia in 1983. She had one son and three grandchildren, Kelsey, Andrew, and Devon Cannata, from a previous marriage. She died overnight in her sleep, according to her family spokeswoman Janet Daily.

In the last two weeks she had attended a discussion on Hollywood and gender held by the SAG-AFTRA actors' guild. She was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2003.

Phil Rosenthal, the producer of Everybody Loves Raymond, said: "We loved our mom, the great Doris Roberts. A wonderful, funny, indelible actress and friend."