Monday, 22 November 2010
Lady Elizabeth Hamilton - Reene Donaghy
She was born at Mountcastle, eldest daughter of Sir George Hamilton, fourth son of the first Earl of Abercorn, and his wife Mary who was the daughter of Thomas Butler Viscount Thurles.
At the court of Charles II, Elizabeth was reported to be both beautiful and witty earning the title 'La Belle Hamilton'.
The court painter Lely painted her portrait many times and National Portrait Gallery online records nine images of her in its collection.
Popular with the king, she refused marriage to the Dukes of Redmond, Norfolk and Tyrconnell, but a eventually married the Comte de Philibert Gramont in 1662 apparently after he was put under pressure by her two brothers. He had been exiled to the London Court by Louis XIV for paying too much attention to one of the king's mistresses.
After marriage, Elizabeth went to Paris where she became Dame du Palais to Queen Maria Theresa of France.
Elizabeth had two daughters, Claude Charlotte who married the Earl of Stafford and Marie Elizabeth she became Abbess of Sainte Marie de Puissey in Lorraine.