Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire by Amanda Foreman
The winner of Britains prestigious Whitbread Prize and a bestseller there for months, this wonderfully readable biography offers a rich, rollicking picture of late-eighteenth-century British aristocracy and the intimate story of a woman who for a time was its undisputed leader.
Lady Georgiana Spencer was the great-great-great-great-aunt of Diana, Princess of Wales, and was nearly as famous in her day. In 1774, at the age of seventeen, Georgiana achieved immediate celebrity by marrying one of Englands richest and most influential aristocrats, the Duke of Devonshire. Launched into a world of wealth and power, she quickly became the queen of fashionable society, adored by the Prince of Wales, a dear friend of Marie-Antoinette, and leader of the most important salon of her time. Not content with the role of society hostess, she used her connections to enter politics, eventually becoming more influential than most of the men who held office.
Her good works and social exploits made her loved by the multitudes, but Georgianas public success, like Dianas, concealed a personal life that was fraught with suffering. The Duke of Devonshire was unimpressed by his wifes legendary charms, preferring instead those of her closest friend, a woman with whom Georgiana herself was rumored to be on intimate terms. For over twenty years, the three lived together in a jealous and uneasy ménage à trois, during which time both women bore the Dukes children—as well as those of other men.
Foremans descriptions of Georgianas uncontrollable gambling, all-night drinking, drug taking, and love affairs with the leading politicians of the day give us fascinating insight into the lives of the British aristocracy in the era of the madness of King George III, the American and French revolutions, and the defeat of Napoleon.
A gifted young historian whom critics are already likening to Antonia Fraser, Amanda Foreman draws on a wealth of fresh research and writes colorfully and penetratingly about the fascinating Georgiana, whose struggle against her own weaknesses, whose great beauty and flamboyance, and whose determination to play a part in the affairs of the world make her a vibrant, astonishingly contemporary figure.
Georgina Spencer-Duchess Of Devonshire
Of noble birth from the Spencer family , married into the Cavendish family , she was the first wife of William Cavendish, 5th Duke of Devonshire , and the mother of the 6th Duke of Devonshire. As the Duchess of Devonshire, she garnered much attention and fame in society during her lifetime. She was the great-great-great-grand- aunt of Diana, Princess of Wales. Their lives, centuries apart, have been compared in tragedy. He built a Spencer family residence at St.
Thank you for this Heather. I had no idea that this Earl Grey was the tea guy. Dominic Cooper plays him in the film. I am suspicious as well, I am not sure how convincing he is going to be, but then again he just has to portray a bratty something guy so that shouldn't be too complicated. He looks about 12 on the poster for The Duchess which bothers me too.
The Duchess came to visit Eliza in secret. Eliza named her firstborn daughter Georgiana. The name Courtney, extinct since the death of Charles Kelland Courtney in , was derived from her great-uncle, her maternal grandmother's brother, William Poyntz d. She was brought to Falloden , Northumberland in northern England and adopted by her paternal grandparents. Unlike her mother's legitimate children from her marriage, Eliza was not raised as part of the Devonshire House set in London.