She was tall and voluptuous with chestnut hair and eyes so deep a blue that they appeared almost black. She died at the age of 68 on 9 October at Chiswick Mall after suffering from an oedema, known at the time as dropsy, an illness which caused her to swell to a huge size and ravaged her once famous beauty. Charles agreed, wanting to nip this independence in the bud before it fostered out of control. They took care to always be in the company of his brother's the Duke of York and the Duke of Gloucester. Character[ edit ] Barbara was known for her dual nature. But you shall own it! By this time, Roger had figured out what was going on. One of the most famous royal mistresses in history, she was considered one of the most audacious and shocking. Not knowing Barbara by sight, Catherine smiled sweetly as this finely dressed woman curtsied in front of her and came to kiss her hand.
By , after almost fourteen years as his mistress, Barbara found herself supplanted by Nell Gwynn and Louise de Keroualle. She was famously extravagant and promiscuous. Like Nixon's enemies list, Barbara never forgot any one who had slighted her and when she had the opportunity, she took her revenge. Still, the King used to visit Barbara four nights a week at her apartments in Whitehall. Their relationship became more public after the birth of their first two children, particularly Charles. She would help herself to money from the Privy Purse and take bribes from the Spanish and the French. Still, Barbara faced rivals to her status as maitresse en titre. Charles leased the Tudor palace of Nonesuch over to her, which she promptly dismantled and sold off piece by piece to pay off her gambling debts. La Belle Stuart, whose visage as Britannia on the coinage of Britain lasted for centuries, was around 14 or 15 when she came to court. She combined with the future Cabal Ministry to bring about Clarendon's downfall. Charles FitzRoy , Duke of Cleveland. In , despite the heated opposition of Queen Catherine, she was forced to accept Barbara as Lady of the Bedchamber, which provided her with an income and rooms at the Palace. Diarist John Evelyn called her "the curse of the nation";  yet, others described her as great fun, keeping a good table and with a heart to match her famous temper. Cultural depictions Barbara Palmer is often featured as a character in literature. All honours for favours served of course and perhaps parting gifts. She was the daughter of William Villiers, 2nd Viscount Grandison d. After her husband's death in , Barbara remarried an opportunist by the name of Major-General Charles Fielding known as Beau. After his death, Barbara, aged forty-five, began an affair with Cardonell Goodman, an actor of infamous reputation, and in March she gave birth to his child. Barbara even bore him a child in Clarendon's banishment convinced Barbara that she was untouchable, and that she could do anything with the King. However, the Queen had been warned about Barbara. Lady Barbara took advantage of her influence over the King, using it to her own benefit. Her extra-marital and extra-extra-marital! She was generous with her lovers, John Churchill was able to purchase an annuity because of her financial help. On his return he appointed her Lady of the Bedchamber to his wife, Catherine of Braganza.
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Barbara Palmer, 1st Duchess of Cleveland
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