Biography of Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723
In Mar 1655 [her father] Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (37) and [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (21) were married.
After Mar 1655 Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 was born to [her father] Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 and [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718.
In 1665 [her father] Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (47) was created 1st Baron Arlington Harlington in Middlesex. [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (31) by marriage Baroness Arlington Harlington in Middlesex.
On 22 Apr 1672 [her father] Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (54) was created 1st Earl Arlington. [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (38) by marriage Countess Arlington.
John Evelyn's Diary 1672 August. 01 Aug 1672. I was at the betrothal of [her father] Lord Arlington's (54) only daughter (17) (a sweet child if ever there was any to the [her husband] Duke of Grafton, the King's natural son (8) by the Duchess of Cleveland (31); the Archbishop of Canterbury (74) officiating, the King (42) and the grandees being present. I had a favor given me by my Lady; but took no great joy at the thing for many reasons.
On 01 Aug 1672 [her husband] Henry Fitzroy 1st Duke Grafton 1663-1690 (8) was created 1st Earl Euston, 1st Viscount Ipswich, 1st Baron Sudbury. Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (17) by marriage Countess Euston.
On 01 Aug 1672 [her husband] Henry Fitzroy 1st Duke Grafton 1663-1690 (8) and Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (17) were married.
In 1675 [her husband] Henry Fitzroy 1st Duke Grafton 1663-1690 (11) was created 1st Duke Grafton (1C 1675). Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (19) by marriage Duchess Grafton (1C 1675).
John Evelyn's Diary 1677 September. 10th September 1677. To divert me, my [her father] Lord (59) would needs carry me to see Ipswich, when we dined with one Mr. Mann by the way, who was Recorder of the town. There were in our company my Lord Huntingtower (28), son to the Duchess of Lauderdale (50), Sir Edward Bacon, a learned gentleman of the family of the great Chancellor Verulam, and Sir John Felton, with some other knights and gentlemen. After dinner came the bailiff and magistrates in their formalities with their maces to compliment my Lord (59), and invite him to the town-house, where they presented us a collation of dried sweetmeats and wine, the bells ringing, etc. Then, we went to see the town, and first, the Lord Viscount Hereford's (3) house, which stands in a park near the town, like that at Brussels, in Flanders; the house not great, yet pretty, especially the hall. The stews for fish succeeded one another, and feed one the other, all paved at bottom. There is a good picture of the blessed virgin in one of the parlors, seeming to be of Holbein, or some good master. Then we saw the Haven, seven miles from Harwich. The tide runs out every day, but the bedding being soft mud, it is safe for shipping and a station. The trade of Ipswich is for the most part Newcastle on Tyne coals, with which they supply London; but it was formerly a clothing town. There is not any beggar asks alms in the whole place, a thing very extraordinary, so ordered by the prudence of the magistrates. It has in it fourteen or fifteen beautiful churches: in a word, it is for building, cleanness, and good order, one of the best towns in England. Cardinal Wolsey was a butcher's son of Ipswich, but there is little of that magnificent Prelate's foundation here, besides a school and I think a library, which I did not see. His intentions were to build some great thing. We returned late to Euston, having traveled about fifty miles this day.
Since first I was at this place, I found things exceedingly improved. It is seated in a bottom between two graceful swellings, the main building being now in the figure of a Greek II with four pavilions, two at each corner, and a break in the front, railed and balustered at the top, where I caused huge jars to be placed full of earth to keep them steady upon their pedestals between the statues, which make as good a show as if they were of stone, and, though the building be of brick, and but two stories besides cellars and garrets covered with blue slate, yet there is room enough for a full court, the offices and outhouses being so ample and well disposed. the King (47)'s apartment is painted à fresco, and magnificently furnished. There are many excellent pictures of the great masters. The gallery is a pleasant, noble room; in the break, or middle, is a billiard table, but the wainscot, being of fir, and painted, does not please me so well as Spanish oak without paint. The chapel is pretty, the porch descending to the gardens. The orange garden is very fine, and leads into the greenhouse, at the end of which is a hall to eat in, and the conservatory some hundred feet long, adorned with maps, as the other side is with the heads of the Cæsars, ill cut in alabaster; above are several apartments for my Lord, Lady, and Duchess, with kitchens and other offices below, in a lesser form; lodgings for servants, all distinct for them to retire to when they please and would be in private, and have no communication with the palace, which he tells me he will wholly resign to his son-in-law and daughter, that charming young creature.
The canal running under my Lady's (43) dressing room chamber window, is full of carps and fowl, which come and are fed there. The cascade at the end of the canal turns a cornmill that provides the family, and raises water for the fountains and offices. To pass this canal into the opposite meadows, Sir Samuel Morland (52) has invented a screw bridge, which, being turned with a key, lands you fifty feet distant at the entrance of an ascending walk of trees, a mile in length,—as it is also on the front into the park,—of four rows of ash trees, and reaches to the park pale, which is nine miles in compass, and the best for riding and meeting the game that I ever saw. There were now of red and fallow deer almost a thousand, with good covert, but the soil barren and flying sand, in which nothing will grow kindly. The tufts of fir, and much of the other wood, were planted by my direction some years before. This seat is admirably placed for field sports, hawking, hunting, or racing. The mutton is small, but sweet. The stables hold thirty horses and four coaches. The out-offices make two large quadrangles, so as servants never lived with more ease and convenience; never master more civil. Strangers are attended and accommodated as at their home, in pretty apartments furnished with all manner of conveniences and privacy.
There is a library full of excellent books; bathing rooms, elaboratory, dispensary, a decoy, and places to keep and fat fowl in. He had now in his new church (near the garden) built a dormitory, or vault, with several repositories, in which to bury his family.
In the expense of this pious structure, the church is most laudable, most of the houses of God in this country resembling rather stables and thatched cottages than temples in which to serve the Most High. He has built a lodge in the park for the keeper, which is a neat dwelling, and might become any gentleman. The same has he done for the parson, little deserving it for murmuring that my Lord put him some time out of his wretched hovel, while it was building. He has also erected a fair inn at some distance from his palace, with a bridge of stone over a river near it, and repaired all the tenants' houses, so as there is nothing but neatness and accommodations about his estate, which I yet think is not above £1,500 a year. I believe he had now in his family one hundred domestic servants.
His lady (43) (being one of the Brederode's daughters, grandchild to a natural son of Henry Frederick, Prince of Orange) [Note. Evelyn confused here. [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (43) was the daughter of Louis Nassau-Beverweert 1602-1665 who was the illegitimate son of Maurice Orange-Nassau I Prince Orange 1567-1625. Frederick Henry Orange-Nassau II Prince Orange 1584-1647 was the younger brother of Maurice Orange-Nassau I Prince Orange 1567-1625.] is a good-natured and obliging woman. They love fine things, and to live easily, pompously, and hospitably; but, with so vast expense, as plunges my Lord (59) into debts exceedingly. My Lord (59) himself is given into no expensive vice but building, and to have all things rich, polite, and princely. He never plays, but reads much, having the Latin, French, and Spanish tongues in perfection. He has traveled much, and is the best bred and courtly person his Majesty (47) has about him, so as the public Ministers more frequent him than any of the rest of the nobility. While he was Secretary of State and Prime Minister, he had gotten vastly, but spent it as hastily, even before he had established a fund to maintain his greatness; and now beginning to decline in favor (the Duke being no great friend of his), he knows not how to retrench. He was son of a Doctor of Laws, whom I have seen, and, being sent from Westminster School to Oxford, with intention to be a divine, and parson of Arlington, a village near Brentford, when Master of Arts the Rebellion falling out, he followed the King (47)'s Army, and receiving an HONORABLE WOUND IN THE FACE, grew into favor, and was advanced from a mean fortune, at his Majesty's (47) Restoration, to be an Earl and Knight of the Garter, Lord Chamberlain of the Household, and first favorite for a long time, during which the King (47) married his natural [her husband] son, the Duke of Grafton (13), to his only daughter (22) and heiress, as before mentioned, worthy for her beauty and virtue of the greatest prince in Christendom. My Lord is, besides this, a prudent and understanding person in business, and speaks well; unfortunate yet in those he has advanced, most of them proving ungrateful. The many obligations and civilities I have received from this noble gentleman, extracts from me this character, and I am sorry he is in no better circumstances.
Having now passed near three weeks at Euston, to my great satisfaction, with much difficulty he suffered me to look homeward, being very earnest with me to stay longer; and, to engage me, would himself have carried me to Lynn-Regis, a town of important traffic, about twenty miles beyond, which I had never seen; as also the Traveling Sands, about ten miles wide of Euston, that have so damaged the country, rolling from place to place, and, like the Sands in the Deserts of Lybia, quite overwhelmed some gentlemen's whole estates, as the relation extant in print, and brought to our Society, describes at large.
John Evelyn's Diary 1679 August. 8th August 1679. I went this morning to show my [her father] Lord Chamberlain (61), his Lady (45), and the Duchess of Grafton (24), the incomparable work of Mr. Gibbon (31), the carver, whom I first recommended to his Majesty (49), his house being furnished like a cabinet, not only with his own work, but divers excellent paintings of the best hands. Thence, to Sir Stephen Fox's (52), where we spent the day.
John Evelyn's Diary 1679 November. 6th November, 1679. Dined at the Countess of Sunderland's (33), and was this evening at the remarriage of the Duchess of Grafton (24) to the [her husband] Duke (16) (his Majesty's (49) natural son), she being now twelve years old. The ceremony was performed in my [her father] Lord Chamberlain's (61) (her father's) lodgings at Whitehall by the Bishop of Rochester (54), his Majesty (49) being present. A sudden and unexpected thing, when everybody believed the first marriage would have come to nothing; but, the measure being determined, I was privately invited by my Lady (45), her mother, to be present. I confess I could give her little joy, and so I plainly told her, but she said the King (49) would have it so, and there was no going back. This sweetest, most hopeful, most beautiful, child, and most virtuous, too, was sacrificed to a boy that had been rudely bred, without anything to encourage them but his Majesty's (49) pleasure. I pray God the sweet child find it to her advantage, who, if my augury deceive me not, will in a few years be such a paragon as were fit to make the wife of the greatest Prince in Europe! I staid supper, where his Majesty (49) sat between the Duchess of Cleveland (38) (the mother of the Duke of Grafton) and the sweet Duchess (24) the bride; there were several great persons and ladies, without pomp. My love to my Lord Arlington's (61) family, and the sweet child made me behold all this with regret, though as the Duke of Grafton (16) affects the sea, to which I find his father intends to use him, he may emerge a plain, useful and robust officer: and were he polished, a tolerable person; for he is exceedingly handsome, by far surpassing any of the King's (49) other natural issue.
John Evelyn's Diary 1683 September. 18 Sep 1683. I went to London to visit the Duchess of Grafton (28), now great with child, a most virtuous and beautiful lady. Dining with her at my Lord Chamberlain's, met my Lord of St. Alban's (78), now grown so blind, that he could not see to take his meat. He has lived a most easy life, in plenty even abroad, while his Majesty (53) was a sufferer; he has lost immense sums at play, which yet, at about eighty years old, he continues, having one that sits by him to name the spots on the cards. He ate and drank with extraordinary appetite. He is a prudent old courtier, and much enriched since his Majesty's (53) return.
After dinner, I walked to survey the sad demolition of Clarendon House, that costly and only sumptuous palace of the late Lord Chancellor Hyde, where I have often been so cheerful with him, and sometimes so sad: happening to make him a visit but the day before he fled from the angry Parliament, accusing him of maladministration, and being envious at his grandeur, who from a private lawyer came to be father-in-law to the Duke of York (49), and as some would suggest, designing his Majesty's (53) marriage with the Infanta of Portugal (44), not apt to breed. To this they imputed much of our unhappiness; and that he, being sole minister and favorite at his Majesty's (53) restoration, neglected to gratify the King (53)'s suffering party, preferring those who were the cause of our troubles. But perhaps as many of these things were injuriously laid to his charge, so he kept the government far steadier than it has proved since. I could name some who I think contributed greatly to his ruin,—the buffoons and the MISSIS, to whom he was an eye-sore. It is true he was of a jolly temper, after the old English fashion; but France had now the ascendant, and we were become quite another nation. The Chancellor gone, and dying in exile, the Earl his successor sold that which cost £50,000 building, to the young Duke of Albemarle (30) for £25,000, to pay debts which how contracted remains yet a mystery, his son (30) being no way a prodigal. Some imagine the Duchess his daughter (29) [Note. Daughter-in-law?] had been chargeable to him. However it were, this stately palace is decreed to ruin, to support the prodigious waste the Duke of Albemarle (30) had made of his estate, since the old man died. He sold it to the highest bidder, and it fell to certain rich bankers and mechanics, who gave for it and the ground about it, £35,000; they design a new town, as it were, and a most magnificent piazza [square]. It is said they have already materials toward it with what they sold of the house alone, more worth than what they paid for it. See the vicissitudes of earthly things! I was astonished at this demolition, nor less at the little army of laborers and artificers leveling the ground, laying foundations, and contriving great buildings at an expense of £200,000, if they perfect their design.
John Evelyn's Diary 1683 October. 10 Oct 1683. Visited the Duchess of Grafton (28), not yet brought to bed, and dining with my [her father] Lord Chamberlain (her father) (65), went with them to see Montague House, a palace lately built by Lord Montague (44), who had married the most beautiful Countess of Northumberland (29). It is a stately and ample palace. Signor Verrio's (47) fresco paintings, especially the funeral pile of Dido, on the staircase, the labors of Hercules, fight with the Centaurs, his effeminacy with Dejanira, and Apotheosis or reception among the gods, on the walls and roof of the great room above,—I think exceeds anything he has yet done, both for design, coloring, and exuberance of invention, comparable to the greatest of the old masters, or what they so celebrate at Rome. In the rest of the chamber are some excellent paintings of Holbein, and other masters. The garden is large, and in good air, but the fronts of the house not answerable to the inside. The court at entry, and wings for offices seem too near the street, and that so very narrow and meanly built, that the corridor is not in proportion to the rest, to hide the court from being overlooked by neighbors; all which might have been prevented, had they placed the house further into the ground, of which there was enough to spare. But on the whole it is a fine palace, built after the French pavilion-way, by Mr. Hooke, the Curator of the Royal Society. There were with us my Lady Scroope, the great wit, and Monsieur Chardine (39), the celebrated traveler.
John Evelyn's Diary 1683 November. 26 Nov 1683. I went to compliment the Duchess of Grafton (28), now lying-in of her [her son] first child, a son, which she called for, that I might see it. She was become more beautiful, if it were possible, than before, and full of virtue and sweetness. She discoursed with me of many particulars, with great prudence and gravity beyond her years.
On 28 Jul 1685 [her father] Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (67) died. His daughter Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (30) succeeded 2nd Earl Arlington, 2nd Baron Arlington Harlington in Middlesex.
On 09 Oct 1690 [her husband] Henry Fitzroy 1st Duke Grafton 1663-1690 (27) was killed at Cork during the Storming of Cork. His son [her son] Charles Fitzroy 2nd Duke Grafton 1683-1757 (6) succeeded 2nd Duke Grafton (1C 1675), 2nd Earl Euston, 2nd Viscount Ipswich, 2nd Baron Sudbury.
John Evelyn's Diary 1693 December. 03 Dec 1693. Mr. Bentley preached at the Tabernacle, near Golden Square. I gave my voice for him to proceed on his former subject the following year in Mr. Boyle's lecture, in which he had been interrupted by the importunity of Sir J. Rotheram that the Bishop of Chichester (59) might be chosen the year before, to the great dissatisfaction of the Bishop of Lincoln (57) and myself. We chose Mr. Bentley again. The Duchess of Grafton's (38) appeal to the House of Lords for the Prothonotary's place given to the late [her husband] Duke and to her son by King Charles II, now challenged by the Lord Chief Justice. The judges were severely reproved on something they said.
In 1698 [her husband] Thomas Hanmer 4th Baronet Hamner 1677-1746 (20) and Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (42) were married.
In Aug 1701 John Hamner 3rd Baronet Hamner -1701 (53) died. His nephew [her husband] Thomas Hanmer 4th Baronet Hamner 1677-1746 (23) succeeded 4th Baronet Hamner of Hamner in Flintshire. Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (46) by marriage Lady Hamner of Hamner in Flintshire.
On 30 Apr 1713 [her son] Charles Fitzroy 2nd Duke Grafton 1683-1757 (29) and Henrietta Somerset Duchess Grafton 1690-1726 (22) were married. Henrietta Somerset Duchess Grafton 1690-1726 (22) by marriage Duchess Grafton (1C 1675).
On 18 Jan 1718 [her mother] Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (84) died.
In 1723 Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (67) died.
On 07 May 1746 [her former husband] Thomas Hanmer 4th Baronet Hamner 1677-1746 (68) died.
Kings Wessex: Great x 26 Grand Daughter of Æthelwulf King Wessex -858
Kings Gwynedd: Great x 17 Grand Daughter of Owain "Great" King Gwynedd 1100-1170
Kings Seisyllwg: Great x 23 Grand Daughter of Hywel "Dda aka Good" King Seisyllwg, King Deheubarth 880-950
Kings Powys: Great x 18 Grand Daughter of Maredudd ap Bleddyn King Powys 1047-1132
Kings England: Great x 12 Grand Daughter of King Edward III England
Kings Scotland: Great x 16 Grand Daughter of William "Lion" I King Scotland 1143-1214
Kings Franks: Great x 17 Grand Daughter of Louis VII King Franks 1120-1180
Kings France: Great x 14 Grand Daughter of Philip "Fair" IV King France 1268-1314
Father: Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 11 x Great Grandson of King Edward III England
GrandFather: John Bennet 1563-1626
GrandMother: Dorothy Crofts 1588-1659 10 x Great Granddaughter of King Edward III England
Great GrandFather: John Crofts 1563-1628 9 x Great Grandson of King Edward III England
Great x 2 GrandFather: Thomas Crofts 1540-1612
Great x 3 GrandFather: Edmund Croftes 1520-1558
Great x 4 GrandFather: John Crofts 1491-1558
Great x 3 GrandMother: Elizabeth Kitson 1511-1586
Great x 4 GrandFather: Thomas Kitson 1485-1540
Great x 4 GrandMother: Margaret Donnington Countess Bath Count Eu 1509-1561
Great x 2 GrandMother: Susannah Crofts 1539-1603 8 x Great Granddaughter of King Edward III England
Great x 3 GrandFather: John Poley 1511-1589
Great x 3 GrandMother: Anne Wentworth 1520-1575 7 x Great Granddaughter of King Edward III England
Great x 4 GrandFather: Thomas Wentworth 1st Baron Wentworth 1501-1551 6 x Great Grandson of King Edward III England
Great x 4 GrandMother: Margaret Fortescue Baroness Wentworth
Great GrandMother: Mary Shirley -1649
Great x 2 GrandFather: Thomas Shirley 1542-1612
Great x 3 GrandFather: William Shirley 1498-1551
Great x 4 GrandFather: Richard Shirley 1478-1540
Great x 2 GrandMother: Anne Kempe 1544-1622
Great x 3 GrandFather: Thomas Kempe 1513-1591
Great x 4 GrandFather: William Kempe 1487-1535
Great x 3 GrandMother: Katherine Cheney -1549
Great x 4 GrandFather: Thomas Cheney Treasurer 1485-1558
Great x 4 GrandMother: Frideswide Frowyk -1528
Mother: Elisabeth Nassau-Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718
GrandFather: Louis Nassau-Beverweert 1602-1665
Great GrandFather: Maurice Orange-Nassau I Prince Orange 1567-1625
Great x 2 GrandFather: William "The Silent" Orange-Nassau I Prince Orange 1533-1584
Great x 3 GrandFather: William "The Rich" I Count of Nassau-Dillenburg 1487-1559
Great x 2 GrandMother: Anna Saxony Princess Orange
Great GrandMother: Margaretha van Mechelen 1580-1662