Her letters were written across six decades, from the time of her second marriage to Sir William Cavendish in the 1550s, through her subsequent marriages, to Sir William St Loe and then to George Talbot, sixth earl of Shrewsbury, to her widowhood in 1590, when she became dowager countess of Shrewsbury, right up to her death in 1608.
In May 1552, she became the second wife of William Herbert, earl of Pembroke (c.1506-March 17, 1569/70), who married her for her money and connections.
When he died, she received a letter of condolence from the queen and was allowed to keep her own clothes and jewels, which would otherwise have gone to her eldest stepson, and stay in Baron Bray (c.1527-November 18, 1557).
This web-edition features 234 letters to and from Bess of Hardwick (c.1521/2-1608); a further 7 letters will be added at the 2014 update, which makes a total of 241 extant letters identified to date.
It is a remarkable number to have for an English woman born before 1550, even more so from one born into the lesser gentry.
When she married without the king’s permission in 1610 she was imprisoned in the Tower of London where she eventually starved herself to death.
She subsequently became a figure of romance and legend and the inspiration for Spencer’s “Duchess of Malfi”.Pollok House, just south of Glasgow and near to the Burrell Collection, is an 18th century mansion built by the Maxwell Family now administered by the National Trust for Scotland.New Perspectives invites artists to produce work suggested by one of the paintings or artefacts in the house and opens to the public on 17th March.In fact, among Tudor women, with the notable exception of Elizabeth I, Bess's correspondence is unrivalled for its extensive scope and range.First we can observe the wide chronological scope of the correspondence: Bess's letters range over the span of a lifetime.On-going project to record a handful of locations in Hexhamshire, Northumberland – 38 x 57cm watercolour on Arches paper " data-medium-file="" data-large-file="" class="alignnone size-full wp-image-472" title="Arabella" src="https://livingstoneart.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/arabella.jpg" alt="" / I have chosen a miniature portrait of Lady Arbella Stuart (1575 – 1615) attributed to Peter Oliver (1594 – 1648) and the resulting work is called Hellish Moths Still Gnaw and Fret (quoted from a poem by John Donne), a selection of rusted and burnt tins with nine species of clothes moth painted in ashes and smoke.