The Hampton Court Beauties are a series of portraits by Sir Godfrey Kneller, commissioned by Queen Mary II of England, depicting the most glamorous ladies from the court of William III. They adorn the state rooms of King William III at Hampton Court Palace. Hampton Court also houses the Windsor Beauties by Sir Peter Lely, depicting the most beautiful ladies of the court of King Charles II of England, a generation before. The Hampton Court Beauties are of a plainer, less erotic style reflecting the change in opinion towards women towards the latter half of the seventeenth century.
Queen Mary II of England
.Isabella FitzRoy, Duchess of Grafton
Isabella Bennet in 1668
7 February 1723
1 Henry FitzRoy, 1st Duke of Grafton
2 Sir Thomas Hanmer
1 Charles FitzRoy, 2nd Duke of Grafton
Henry Bennet, 1st Earl of Arlington
Elisabeth of Nassau
Isabella Bennet was the only daughter of Henry Bennet, 1st Earl of Arlington, a Royalist commander, by his wife, Elisabeth of Nassau (1633–1718). Elisabeth was a daughter of Louis of Nassau-Beverweerd and thus a granddaughter of Maurice of Nassau, Prince of Orange, and a great-granddaughter of William the Silent. She was married at the age of four to Henry FitzRoy, Earl of Euston (later created Duke of Grafton), the nine-year-old illegitimate son of King Charles II. The wedding ceremony was repeated on 7 November 1679 and they lived at Euston Hall. Isabella and her husband had one son, Charles FitzRoy, who succeeded his parents as 2nd Duke of Grafton and 3rd Earl of Arlington. After her husband’s death in 1690 from a wound received at the storming of Cork while leading the forces of William of Orange, she remarried on 14 October 1698 to Sir Thomas Hanmer, 4th Baronet, Speaker of the British House of Commons
.Margaret Cecil, Countess of Ranelagh
21 February 1728
James Cecil, 3rd Earl of Salisbury
Margaret Cecil, Countess of Salisbury
1 John Stawell, 2nd Baron Stawell
2 Richard Jones, 1st Earl of Ranelagh
3 George Thomas Downing
1 Anne Stawell
2 Sarah Isabell Downing
Lady Margaret was the daughter of James Cecil, 3rd Earl of Salisbury and his wife Margaret, a daughter of the Earl of Rutland. She first married John Stawell, 2nd Baron Stawell; he died in 1692 they had one daughter, Anne. She later married Richard Jones, 1st Earl of Ranelagh on 9 January, either 1695 or 1696, they had no issue. Her third husband was George Thomas Downing; the couple had a daughter Sarah Isabell Downing, and a son, George Downing.
.Carey Fraser, Countess of Peterborough
13 May 1709
Charles Mordaunt, 2nd Viscount Mordaunt
1 Lady Henrietta Mordaunt
2 John Mordaunt, Viscount Mordaunt
3 Henry Mordaunt
Sir Alexander Fraser, 1st Baronet, of Durris
physician to King Charles II of England.
Her father was Sir Alexander Fraser, 1st Baronet, of Durris in the County of Kincardine (1607–1681), physician to Charles II, and her mother was Mary Carey, daughter of Sir Ferdinando Carey and Philippa Throckmorton. She was a maid of honour to Charles II’s queen consort, Catherine of Braganza, from 1674 to 1680. In 1678 she married Charles Mordaunt, 2nd Viscount Mordaunt (1658–1735), later 3rd Earl of Peterborough, and created Earl of Monmouth (in 1689). The marriage was, however, kept secret until May 1680.
.Frances Whitmore, Lady Middleton
Sir Richard Myddelton, 3rd Baronet
1 Frances Myddelton
2 Mary Myddelton
3 Sir William Myddelton, 4th Baronet
Sir Thomas Whitmore
She was styled Dame Frances Myddelton.
.Mary Scrope, later Mrs Pitt
John Pitt of Crow’s Hall
Nothing much is known except Mary was said to be the most beautiful lady of the court.
.Diana Beauclerk, Duchess of St Albans
15 January 1742
1st Duke of St Albans
an illegitimate son of King Charles II
and his mistress Nell Gwynne
1 Charles Beauclerk, 2nd Duke of St Albans (6 April 1696 – 27 July 1751)
2 Lady Diana Beauclerk (born c 1697)
3 Lord William Beauclerk (22 May 1698 – 23 February 1732/33)
4 Admiral Vere Beauclerk, 1st Baron Vere of Hanworth (14 July 1699 – 21 October 1781)
5 Colonel Lord Henry Beauclerk (11 August 1701 – 5 January 1761)
6 Lord Sidney Beauclerk (27 February 1703 – 23 November 1744)
7 Lieutenant-General Lord George Beauclerk (26 December 1704 – 11 May 1768)
8 Lord Seymour Beauclerk (born 24 June 1708)
9 Rt. Revd. Lord James Beauclerk (c 1709 – 20 October 1787), Bishop of Hereford
10 Lord Aubrey Beauclerk (1711 – 24 February 1740)
11 Lady Mary Beauclerk (born c 1713)
12 Lady Anne Beauclerk (born c 1716)
Aubrey de Vere, 20th Earl of Oxford
Born Lady Diana de Vere, was a British courtier. She was Mistress of the Robes to Caroline, Princess of Wales from 1714 to 1717.
.Mary Capel, Countess of Essex
20 August 1726
1 Algernon Capel 2nd Earl of Essex
2 Sir Conyers Darcy
1 William Capell, 3rd Earl of Essex
2 Lady Mary Capel
3 Lady Elizabeth Capell.
4 Thomas Capell
William Bentinck, 1st Earl of Portland
Lady Frances Howard
Born Lady Mary Bentinck Despite sharing a surname, Mary’s aunt, Barbara Villiers, Viscountess FitzHarding was not the renowned courtesan and Windsor Beauty the Duchess of Cleveland, although there is a relation; the Duchess of Cleveland was Mary’s first cousin once removed through her mother, Anne Villiers. Lady Mary’s paternal grandparents were Sir Edward Villiers and Lady Frances Howard, daughter of the 2nd Earl of Suffolk and his wife, Lady Elizabeth Home (died 19 August 1633), daughter of the 1st Earl of Dunbar. Through her grandfather, Sir Edward Villiers, she descended from Sir Oliver St. John and Margaret Beauchamp, mother to Lady Margaret Beaufort. Lady Mary’s maternal grandparents were Bernard Bentinck, 6th Baron Bentinck of the Netherlands (died 29 July 1668), a descendent from an ancient and noble family of Guelders and Overijssel, and his wife Anne van Bloemendale (died 30 March 1685)
.Mary Sackville, Countess of Dorset
6 August 1691
Charles Sackville, 6th Earl of Dorset
1 Lionel Cranfield Sackville, 7th Earl of Dorset
2 Lady Mary Sackville
James Compton, 3rd Earl of Northampton
Lady Mary Compton (1669 – 6 August 1691), later Mary Sackville, Countess of Dorset, was a member of Queen Mary II’s court. She and her husband lived at Copt Hall, Waltham Abbey, Essex. Mary Sackville, Countess of Dorset died of smallpox in 1691, aged 22 years.
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