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Bruce, Thomas, second earl of Ailesbury (1656–1741), nobleman and memoirist, was born on 26 September 1656, probably at Ampthill, Bedfordshire, the fifth but first surviving son of Robert Bruce, first earl of Ailesbury (bap. 1626, d. 1685), and his wife, Diana (d...

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Butler, Thomas, tenth earl of Ormond and third earl of Ossory (1531–1614), nobleman, was born about February 1531, the eldest of seven sons and heir of James Butler, ninth earl of Ormond and second earl of Ossory (b. in or after 1496, d. 1546)...

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Thomas Butler, tenth earl of Ormond and third earl of Ossory (1531–1614) attrib. Steven van der Meulen photograph by courtesy Sotheby's Picture Library, London

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Cecil, James, fourth earl of Salisbury (1666–1694), nobleman, was born at Hatfield House, Hertfordshire, and baptized there on 25 September 1666, the second of ten children and eldest son of James Cecil, third earl of Salisbury (d. 1683), and Margaret (d. 1682)...

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James Cecil, fourth earl of Salisbury (1666–1694) by Willem Wissing, c. 1685 The Marquess of Salisbury

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Howard [née Mordaunt; other married name Germain], Mary, duchess of Norfolk (1658/9–1705), noblewoman and divorcee, was the only daughter and heir of Henry Mordaunt, second earl of Peterborough (bap. 1623, d. 1697), and his wife, Lady Penelope (c.1622–1702), daughter of ...

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Howard, William, Viscount Stafford (1612–1680), nobleman, was born on 30 November 1612, the fifth son of Thomas Howard, fourteenth earl of Arundel (1585–1646), courtier and art collector, and his wife, Aletheia (d. 1654), daughter of Gilbert Talbot, seventh earl of Shrewsbury [...

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Katherine MacDonnell, duchess of Buckingham and marchioness of Antrim (1603?–1649) by Sir Anthony Van Dyck, 1620–21 [ and George Villiers, first duke of Buckingham (1592–1628) ] Derek Johns Ltd, London

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MacDonnell [née Manners; other married name Villiers], Katherine, duchess of Buckingham and marchioness of Antrim (1603?–1649), noblewoman, was the only daughter of Francis Manners, sixth earl of Rutland (1578–1632), the leading noble of the midlands and a prominent courtier, and his wife, ...

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Manners, Francis, sixth earl of Rutland (1578–1632), nobleman, was the second son of John Manners, fourth earl of Rutland (d. 1588), and Elizabeth (d. 1595), daughter of Francis Charlton of Apley Castle, Shropshire; his elder brother was Roger Manners, fifth earl of Rutland...

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Mordaunt, Henry, second earl of Peterborough (bap. 1623, d. 1697), nobleman, was baptized at St Ann Blackfriars, London, on 18 October 1623, the son and heir of John Mordaunt first earl of Peterborough (bap. 1599, d. 1643), and his wife, Elizabeth Howard (1603–1671)...

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See Mordaunt, Henry, second earl of Peterborough

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O'Brien, Murrough, first earl of Inchiquin (c. 1614–1674), nobleman and army officer, was the eldest son of Dermod O'Brien, fifth Baron Inchiquin (1594–1624), and his wife, Ellen, eldest daughter of Sir Edmond Fitzgerald of Cloyne.

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Murrough O'Brien, first earl of Inchiquin (c. 1614–1674) by John Michael Wright, c. 1660–70 © Manchester City Art Galleries

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Somerset, Henry, first duke of Beaufort (1629–1700), nobleman, was born at Raglan Castle, Monmouthshire, the only son of Edward Somerset, sixth earl and second marquess of Worcester (d. 1667), and his wife, Elizabeth (d. 1635), daughter of Sir William Dormer. His grandfather thought ...

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Henry Somerset, first duke of Beaufort (1629–1700) by Sir Godfrey Kneller, c. 1680 reproduced by kind permission of His Grace the Duke of Beaufort. Photograph: Photographic Survey, Courtauld Institute of Art, London