Marguerite (Power) Gardiner, Countess of Blessington was an Irish novelist. A woman of high society, she was well known, particularly among literary circles as she had a literary salon at Gore House, Kensington. One might think from the portrait she led a protected and cherished life, but a quick review of a few biographical facts will reveal much that can not be seen just looking at pretty face. Deemed a woman of “rare beauty, generosity, and wit”, she wrote essays and sketches of London life. She and the Romantic English poet, Lord Byron, appear to have been very close friends. Her husband introduced them. She wrote a book about their conversations. There was at least the “appearance” of a friendship, however, some say she lived in her own world of make-believe when it came to their relationship.
Margaret, Countess of Blessington (1789 – 1849); Artist: Sir Thomas Lawrence (1769 – 1830); Wikimedia Commons
To know more about the Countess here are a few suggested bio links:
- Encyclopedia Brittanica;
- The Wallace Collection;
- Famous Affinities of History.
Quotes found at Thoughtful Mind that may provide a peek into this gentle lady’s true nature:
- “Prejudices are the chains forged by ignorance to keep men apart.”
- “Superstition is only the fear of belief, while religion is the confidence.”
(NOTE: Blog post first appeared at Dispensable Thoughts, Fri, 7 Mar 2014.)