Elizabeth Brydges (c.1574 - 1617)

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About Elizabeth Brydges

ELIZABETH BRYDGES (1574-October 1617)

Elizabeth Brydges was the daughter of Giles Brydges, 3rd baron Chandos (1547-February 21,1594) and Frances Clinton (1553-September 12,1623). She was co-heiress with her sister Catherine (1576-1654) to a fortune reckoned at £16,500. She nearly married one Charles Lister, then caught the eye of Robert Devereux, earl of Essex, Queen Elizabeth’s favorite. In April 1597, she and Elizabeth Russell were turned out of the Coffer Chamber for going to watch the earl play at ballon without permission. The two maids of honor spent three nights at Lady Stafford’s house before they were allowed to return to court. Elizabeth Brydges’s romance with Essex cooled, but in early 1598, he was said to have resumed the affair. In June 1602, during negotiations over the ownership of Sudeley Castle (Elizabeth’s uncle, William, 4th baron Chandos, also claimed the property) Elizabeth’s cousin, Grey Brydges, assaulted Elizabeth’s representative. In October of that year the proposal was made that Elizabeth marry Grey to settle the matter, but nothing came of the suggestion. Elizabeth Brydges was still at court in 1603 when Queen Elizabeth died and was in the funeral procession. Shortly after James I became king, Elizabeth married Sir John Kennedy, but Grey, now Lord Chandos, disapproved of the match and discovered that Kennedy already had a wife in Scotland. Forced to separate from her husband, Elizabeth lived the rest of her life in relative poverty and obscurity.

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