Olga's Gallery

The Lennoxes


Charles Lennox, 3rd Duke of Richmond and Lennox (1735-1806), British statesman, was the elder son of Charles, 2nd Duke of Richmond (a legitimate descendant of an illegitimate son of King Charles II of England) and his wife Lady Sarah, daughter of Earl Cadogan. In 1757 he married Lady Mary Bruce (see her portrait Mary, Duchess of Richmond).
In 1765 he was appointed British ambassador extraordinary in Paris, and in the following year he became a secretary of state.
The Duke was a firm supporter of the American colonists; and he initiated the debate of 1778 calling for the removal of troops from America.

He opened, in March 1758, at his house in Whitehall, a gallery of casts of antique statues where students could draw under the direction of Wilton and Cipriani. He soon lost interest and the gallery was closed in either 1765 or 1766. He was a member of the Society of Dilettanti. Richmond died in December 1806, and, leaving no legitimate children, he was succeeded in the peerage by his nephew Charles, son of his brother, General Lord George Henry Lennox.
See: Sir Joshua Reynolds. Charles Lennox, 3rd Duke of Richmond. Mary, Duchess of Richmond.

The Duke’s sisters Lady Caroline (1723-1774), Lady Emily (1731-1814), Lady Louisa and Lady Sarah Lenox, are all presently known by the book Aristocrats by Stella Tillyard (The Noonday Press, 1992)

Lady Caroline (1723-1774), also known as Baroness Holland, in 1744, eloped with Henry Fox, 1st Baron Holland, a politician who was eighteen years her senior. The marriage was disapproved of by her family, but proved a happy one. The couple had several sons, including the great Whig politician, Charles James Fox. Their home, Holland House in Kensington, London, became famous as a social and political center.
See: Sir Joshua Reynolds. Caroline, Lady Holland.

Lady Emily Lennox (1731-1814), also known as Emily FitzGerald, the Countess of Kildare (1747-1761), as the Marchioness of Kildare, (1761-1766) and the Duchess of Leinster was the second of the Lennox sisters. She married James FitzGerald, 20th Earl of Kildale, in 1747 and lived with him in Ireland. They had nineteen children, and Lord Kildare was created successively Marquess of Kildare and Duke of Leinster in recognition of his contribution to the political life of his country. After his death in 1773, the Duchess caused a scandal by marrying her children's tutor, William Ogilvie, with whom she had begun an affair some years earlier. Ogilvie was nine years her junior. Emily gave birth to three children by him.
See: Sir Joshua Reynolds. Emily, Duchess of Leinster. James FitzGerald, Duke of Leinster. Emily, Duchess of Leinster.

Lady Louisa Lennox (1743-1821), the third of the four Lennox sisters. After the death of their parents, Lady Louisa was brought up by her elder sister Emily FitzGerald, Duchess of Leinster, in Kildare, Ireland. She married Tom Connolly, the grand-nephew of William Connolly, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons. The couple lived in their estate Castletown House, County Kildare, Ireland. She directed the decoration of the mansion, while her husband raised and rode racehorses.
See: Sir Joshua Reynolds. Thomas Conolly.

Lady Sarah Lennox (1745-1826) the youngest and the most infamous of the four sisters. After the death of both parents, she was brought up by her elder sisters. In 1760, Sarah was introduced to court and caught the eye of the young King George III. Her family hoped to see her as queen, but the King's advisors dissuaded him from this marriage, on political grounds. Her sister Caroline was the wife of Henry Fox), a member of the politically radical Fox family. In 1762, Sarah was married off to Sir Charles Bunbury. Their marriage was not a happy one, and Sarah did not try to hide this, earning herself a negative reputation. In 1769, she eloped with Lord William Gordon, with whom she had been having an affair, and was ostracised by society as a result. Eventually she settled down with an impoverished army officer, George Napier. They were married in 1781, and had eight children, including Charles James Napier (1782-1853) British general, Commander-in-Chief in India.
See: Sir Joshua Reynolds. Lady Sarah Bunbury Sacrificing to the Graces.

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