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Denbigh, Susan Villiers, Countess of – (1591 – 1655)
English Stuart courtier
Susan Villiers was the daughter of Sir George Villiers, and his second wife, Mary Beaumont, Countess of Buckingham, and was sister to George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham, the celebrated favourite of Charles I. She was married (1607) to William Feilding (1582 – 1643), later created Earl of Denbigh (1622). Lady Denbigh was a prominent figure at the court, and accompanied Queen Henrietta Maria in to exile at St Germain-en-Laye, where she served her as a lady-in-waiting.
Her husband was killed near Birmingham during the Civil War (1643), and the countess remained a member of the exiled court in France, eventually converting to Roman Catholicism. She died at Cologne, Germany (before June 8, 1655). The countess was the mother of Basil Feilding, second Earl of Denbigh (1608 – 1675), whose wife Isabella was sister to Maria Catharina Cornelia, Marchioness of Blandford, granddaughter-in-law to the redoubtable Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough. Crashaw dedicated religious verse to her.
Essayes, By Sir William Corne-Walyes the Younger, …
You will not be at a loss, sir, in what part of this picture to look for your own resemblance; nor have I the least apprehension that you will mistake it on the affirmative side. The happy indifference with which you view those qualities most esteemed for their usefulness to society will preserve you from the possibility of an illusion of this kind. Content with the humble merit of possessing qualities useful only to yourself, you will contemplate your own image on the opposite side with all the satisfaction of conscious deformity.