Biography of Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham 1641-1709

1685 Death and Burial of Charles II

1685 Battle of Sedgemoor

1688 Glorious Revolution

In 1641 Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham was born to Guy Aldonce Marquis of Duras and Count of Rozan (age 36).

In 1665 [his father] Guy Aldonce Marquis of Duras and Count of Rozan (age 60) died.

Pepy's Diary. 01 Sep 1667. Lord's Day. Up, and betimes by water from the Tower, and called at the Old Swan [Map] for a glass of strong water, and sent word to have little Michell and his wife come and dine with us to-day; and so, taking in a gentleman and his lady that wanted a boat, I to Westminster. Setting them on shore at Charing Cross [Map], I to Mrs. Martin's, where I had two pair of cuffs which I bespoke, and there did sit and talk with her.... [Missing text: "and no mas, ella having aquellos [ those ] upon her"] and here I did see her little girle my goddaughter, which will be pretty, and there having staid a little I away to Creed's chamber, and when he was ready away to White Hall, where I met with several people and had my fill of talk. Our new Lord-keeper, Bridgeman (age 61), did this day, the first time, attend the King (age 37) to chapel with his Seal. Sir H. Cholmly (age 35) tells me there are hopes that the women will also have a rout, and particularly that my Baroness Castlemayne (age 26) is coming to a composition with the King (age 37) to be gone; but how true this is, I know not. Blancfort (age 26) is made Privy-purse to the Duke of York (age 33); the Attorney-general (age 69) is made Chief justice, in the room of my Lord Bridgeman (age 61); the Solicitor-general (age 45) is made Attorney-general; and Sir Edward Turner (age 50) made Solicitor-general.

Pepy's Diary. 04 Mar 1669. Up, and a while at the office, but thinking to have Mr. Povy's (age 55) business to-day at the Committee for Tangier, I left the Board and away to White Hall, where in the first court I did meet Sir Jeremy Smith, who did tell me that Sir W. Coventry (age 41) was just now sent to the Tower, about the business of his challenging the Duke of Buckingham (age 41), and so was also Harry Saville (age 27) to the Gate-house; which, as [he is] a gentleman, and of the Duke of York's (age 35) bedchamber, I heard afterwards that the Duke of York (age 35) is mightily incensed at, and do appear very high to the King (age 38) that he might not be sent thither, but to the Tower [Map], this being done only in contempt to him. This news of Sir W. Coventry (age 41) did strike me to the heart, and with reason, for by this and my Lord of Ormond's (age 58) business, I do doubt that the Duke of Buckingham (age 41) will be so flushed, that he will not stop at any thing, but be forced to do any thing now, as thinking it not safe to end here; and, Sir W. Coventry (age 41) being gone, the King (age 38) will have never a good counsellor, nor the Duke of York (age 35) any sure friend to stick to him; nor any good man will be left to advise what is good. This, therefore, do heartily trouble me as any thing that ever I heard. So up into the House, and met with several people; but the Committee did not meet; and the whole House I find full of this business of Sir W. Coventry's (age 41), and most men very sensible of the cause and effects of it. So, meeting with my Lord Bellassis (age 54), he told me the particulars of this matter; that it arises about a quarrel which Sir W. Coventry (age 41) had with the Duke of Buckingham (age 41) about a design between the Duke and Sir Robert Howard, to bring him into a play at the King's house, which W. Coventry (age 41) not enduring, did by H. Saville (age 27) send a letter to the Duke of Buckingham (age 41), that he had a desire to speak with him. Upon which, the Duke of Buckingham (age 41) did bid Holmes (age 47), his champion ever since my Lord Shrewsbury's business1, go to him to know the business; but H. Saville (age 27) would not tell it to any but himself, and therefore did go presently to the Duke of Buckingham (age 41), and told him that his uncle Coventry (age 41) was a person of honour, and was sensible of his Grace's liberty taken of abusing him, and that he had a desire of satisfaction, and would fight with him. But that here they were interrupted by my Lord Chamberlain's (age 67) coming in, who was commanded to go to bid the Duke of Buckingham (age 41) to come to the King (age 38), Holmes (age 47) having discovered it. He told me that the King (age 38) did last night, at the Council, ask the Duke of Buckingham (age 41), upon his honour, whether he had received any challenge from W. Coventry (age 41)? which he confessed that he had; and then the King (age 38) asking W. Coventry (age 41), he told him that he did not owne what the Duke of Buckingham (age 41) had said, though it was not fit for him to give him a direct contradiction. But, being by the King (age 38) put upon declaring, upon his honour, the matter, he answered that he had understood that many hard questions had upon this business been moved to some lawyers, and that therefore he was unwilling to declare any thing that might, from his own mouth, render him obnoxious to his Majesty's displeasure, and, therefore, prayed to be excused: which the King (age 38) did think fit to interpret to be a confession, and so gave warrant that night for his commitment to the Tower. Being very much troubled at this, I away by coach homewards, and directly to the Tower, where I find him in one Mr. Bennet's house, son to Major Bayly, one of the Officers of the Ordnance, in the Bricke Tower [Map]2 where I find him busy with my Lord Halifax (age 35) and his brother (age 50); so I would not stay to interrupt them, but only to give him comfort, and offer my service to him, which he kindly and cheerfully received, only owning his being troubled for the King (age 38) his master's displeasure, which, I suppose, is the ordinary form and will of persons in this condition. And so I parted, with great content, that I had so earlily seen him there; and so going out, did meet Sir Jer. Smith going to meet me, who had newly been with Sir W. Coventry (age 41). And so he and I by water to Redriffe [Map], and so walked to Deptford, Kent [Map], where I have not been, I think, these twelve months: and there to the Treasurer's house, where the Duke of York (age 35) is, and his Duchess (age 31); and there we find them at dinner in the great room, unhung; and there was with them my Lady Duchess of Monmouth (age 31), the Countess of Falmouth (age 24), Castlemayne (age 28), Henrietta Hide (age 23) (my Lady Hinchingbroke's (age 24) sister), and my Lady Peterborough (age 47). And after dinner Sir Jer. Smith and I were invited down to dinner with some of the Maids of Honour, namely, Mrs. Ogle (age 17), Blake (age 16), and Howard (age 18), which did me good to have the honour to dine with, and look on; and the Mother of the Maids, and Mrs. Howard (age 43), the mother of the Maid of Honour of that name, and the Duke's housekeeper here. Here was also Monsieur Blancfort (age 28), Sir Richard Powell, Colonel Villers (age 48), Sir Jonathan Trelawny (age 46), and others. And here drank most excellent, and great variety, and plenty of wines, more than I have drank, at once, these seven years, but yet did me no great hurt. Having dined and very merry, and understanding by Blancfort (age 28) how angry the Duke of York (age 35) was, about their offering to send Saville to the Gate-house, among the rogues; and then, observing how this company, both the ladies and all, are of a gang, and did drink a health to the union of the two brothers, and talking of others as their enemies, they parted, and so we up; and there I did find the Duke of York (age 35) and Duchess (age 31), with all the great ladies, sitting upon a carpet, on the ground, there being no chairs, playing at "I love my love with an A, because he is so and so: and I hate him with an A, because of this and that:" and some of them, but particularly the Duchess (age 31) herself, and my Baroness Castlemayne (age 28), were very witty. This done, they took barge, and I with Sir J. Smith to Captain Cox's; and there to talk, and left them and other company to drink; while I slunk out to Bagwell's; and there saw her, and her mother, and our late maid Nell, who cried for joy to see me, but I had no time for pleasure then nor could stay, but after drinking I back to the yard, having a month's mind para have had a bout with Nell, which I believe I could have had, and may another time.

Note 1. Charles II wrote to his sister (age 24) (Henrietta, Duchess of Orléans), on March 7th, 1669: "I am not sorry that Sir Will. Coventry has given me this good occasion by sending my Lord of Buckingham (age 41) a challenge to turne him out of the Councill. I do intend to turn him allso out of the Treasury. The truth of it is, he has been a troublesome man in both places and I am well rid of him" (Julia Cartwright's "Madame", 1894, p. 283).

Note 2. The Brick Tower [Map] stands on the northern wall, a little to the west of Martin tower, with which it communicates by a secret passage. It was the residence of the Master of the Ordnance, and Raleigh was lodged here for a time.

On 19 Jan 1673 Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham (age 32) was created 1st Baron Duras.

Evelyn's Diary. 24 Oct 1675. Dined at Lord Chamberlain's (age 57) with the Holland Ambassador L. Duras (age 34), a valiant gentleman whom his Majesty (age 45) made an English Baron, of a cadet, and gave him his seat of Holmby, in Northamptonshire.

In 1676 Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham (age 35) and Mary Sondes Countess Feversham (age 18) were married. She the daughter of George Sondes 1st Earl Feversham (age 76).

On 16 Apr 1677 [his father-in-law] George Sondes 1st Earl Feversham (age 77) died. His son-in-law Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham (age 36) succeeded 2nd Earl Feversham. [his wife] Mary Sondes Countess Feversham (age 20) by marriage Countess Feversham.

Evelyn's Diary. 18 Dec 1684. I went with Lord Cornwallis (age 28) to see the young gallants do their exercise, Mr. Faubert having newly rail'd in a manage, and fitted it for the academy. There were the Dukes of Norfolk (age 29) and Northumberland (age 18), Lord Newburgh, and a nephew of (Duras) Earle of Feversham (age 43). The exercises were, 1. running at the ring; 2. flinging a javelin at a Moor's head; 3. discharging a pistol at a mark; lastly, taking up a gauntlet with the point of a sword; all these perform'd in full speede. The D. of Northumberland (age 18) hardly miss'd of succeeding in every one, a dozen times, as I think. The D. of Norfolk (age 29) did exceeding bravely. Lords Newburgh and Duras seem'd nothing so dextrous. Here I saw the difference of what ye French call "belle homme a cheval", and "bon homme a cheval;" the Duke of Norfolk being the first, that is, rather a fine person on a horse, the Duke of Northumberland being both in perfection, namely, a graceful person and excellent rider. But the Duke of Norfolk told me he had not ben at this exercise these 12 yeares before. There were in the field ye Prince of Denmark (age 31), and the Lord Landsdown (age 23), sonn of ye Earle of Bath (age 56), who had ben made a Count of ye Empire last Summer for his service before Vienna.

In 1685 Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham (age 44) was appointed 493rd Knight of the Garter by King James II of England Scotland and Ireland (age 51)..

Death and Burial of Charles II

Evelyn's Diary. 04 Feb 1685. Prayers were solemnly made in all the Churches, especialy in both ye Court Chapells, where the Chaplaines reliev'd one another every halfe quarter of an houre from the time he began to be in danger till he expir'd, according to the forme prescrib'd in the Church Offices. Those who assisted his Majesty's (age 54) devotions were, the Abp. of Canterbury (age 68), the Bishops of London (age 53), Durham (age 52), and Ely (age 47), but more especialy Dr. Ken, the Bp. of Bath and Wells (age 47) receiving the Holy Sacrament, but his Ma* told them he would consider of it, which he did so long 'till it was too late. Others whisper'd that the Bishops and Lords, except the Earles of Bath (age 56) and Feversham (age 44), being order'd to withdraw the night before, Hurlston, the 'Priest, had presumed to administer the Popish Offices. He gave his breeches and keys to yc Duke (age 51), who was almost continually kneeling by his bed-side, and in teares. He also recommended to him the care of his natural children, all except the Duke of Monmouth (age 35), now in Holland, and in his displeasure. He intreated the Queene (age 46) to pardon him (not without cause); who a little before had sent a Bishop to excuse her not more frequently visiting him, in reguard of her excessive griefe, and withall, that his Ma* (age 54) would forgive it if at any time she had offended him. He spake to ye Duke (age 51) to be kind to the Dutchesse of Cleaveland (age 44), and especialy Portsmouth (age 35), and that Nelly (age 35) might not starve.

Battle of Sedgemoor

Evelyn's Diary. 08 Jul 1685. Came news of Monmouth's (age 36) utter defeate, and the next day of his being taken by Sr Wm Portman (age 41) and Lord Lumley (age 35) with the militia of their counties. It seemes the horse, commanded by Lord Grey (age 29), being newly rais'd and undisciplin'd, were not to be brought in so short a time to endure the fire, which expos'd the foote to the King's, so as when Monmouth had led the foote in greate silence and order, thinking to surprize Lieut Gen Lord Feversham (age 44) newly encamp'd, and given him a smart charge, interchanging both greate and small shot, the horse, breaking their owne ranks, Monmouth (age 36) gave it over, and fled with Grey (age 29), leaving their party to be cut in pieces to the number of 2000. The whole number reported to be above 8,000, the King's but 2,700. The slaine were most of them Mendip-miners, who did greate execution with their tooles, and sold their lives very dearely, whilst their leaders flying were pursu'd and taken the next morning, not far from one another. Monmouth (age 36) had gone 16 miles on foote, changing; his habite for a poore coate, and was found by Lord Lumley (age 35) in a dry ditch cover'd with fern-brakes, but without sword, pistol, or any weapon, and so might have pass'd for some countryman, his beard being grown so long and so grey as hardly to be known, had not his George [Note. This is possible a reference to the Small St George Pendant] discover'd him, which was found in his pocket. 'Tis said he trembl'd exceedingly all over, not able to speake. Grey (age 29) was taken not far from him. Most of his party were anabaptists and poore cloth workers of yu country, no gentlemen of account being come in to him. The arch-boutefeu Ferguson, Matthews, *&c. were not yet found. The £5,000 to be given to whoever should bring Monmouth in, was to be distributed among the militia by agreement between Sr Wm Portman (age 41) and Lord Lumley (age 35). The battail ended, some words, first In jest, then in passion, pass'd between Sharington Talbot (deceased) (a worthy gent. son to Sr John Talbot (age 55), and who had behav'd himselfe very handsomely) and one Capt. Love, both commanders of the militia, as to whose souldiers fought best, both drawing their swords and passing at one another. Sharington (deceased) was wounded to death on the spot, to the greate regret of those who knew him. He was Sir John's only son.

Evelyn's Diary. 16 Sep 1685. The next morning setting out early, we ariv'd soon enough at Winchester [Map] to waite on the King (age 51), who was lodg'd at the Dean's (Dr. Meggot). I found very few with him besides my Lords Feversham (age 44), Arran [Note. Not clear which Earl of Arran], Newport (age 65), and the Bishop of Bath and Wells (age 48). His Ma* (age 51) was discoursing with the Bishops concerning miracles, and what strange things the Saludadors would do in Spaine, as by creeping into heated ovens without hurt, and that they had a black crosse in the roofe of their mouthes, but yet were commonly notorious and profane wretches; upon which his Majesty (age 51) further said, that he was so extreamly difficult of miracles, for feare of being impos'd upon, that if he should chance to see one himselfe, without some other witness, he should apprehend it a delusion of his senses. Then they spake of ye boy who was pretended to have a wanting leg restor'd him, so confidently asserted by Fr. de Sta Clara and others. To all which the Bishop added a greate miracle happening In Winchester to his certaine knowledge, of a poor miserably sick and decrepit child (as I remember long kept unbaptiz'd), who immediately on his baptism recover'd; as also of yc salutary effect of K. Charles his Ma*s father's blood, in healing one that was blind.

Glorious Revolution

Evelyn's Diary. 13 Dec 1688. The Prince of Orange (age 38) is advanced to Windsor [Map], is invited by the King (age 55) to St. James's [Map], the messenger sent was the Earl of Faversham (age 47), the General of the Forces, who going without trumpet, or passport, is detained prisoner by the Prince (age 38), who accepts the invitation, but requires his Majesty (age 38) to retire to some distant place, that his own guards may be quartered about the palace and city. This is taken heinously and the King (age 38) goes privately to Rochester, Kent [Map]; is persuaded to come back; comes on the Sunday; goes to mass, and dines in public, a Jesuit saying grace (I was present).

On 19 Apr 1709 Louis Duras 2nd Earl Feversham (age 68) died without without issue. Earl Feversham and Baron Duras extinct.