Irish History

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Margaret Wolfe Hungerford

“The Duchess” – Margaret Wolfe Argles Hungerford

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is a quote that is well known to all of us and was originally penned by Margaret Wolfe Argles Hungerford [H.2a=] (born 27 April 1859) in her book Molly Bawn, the story of a flirtatious and petulant Irish girl, who arouses her lover’s jealousy and naively ignores social conventions. Initially publishing under the nom de plume “The Duchess”, the life and times of Margaret Wolfe Argles Hungerford is celebrated annually on the “Duchess Who Wasn’t Day”.

Margaret Hungerford (?-?1690)

Margaret Hungerford was born at unknown date, probably in Co Cork, to Thomas Hungerford and Mary May. She was born after her parents’ marriage in 1640 and, as she was married in 1680, probably no later than the early 1660s.
Margaret Hungerford and Thomas Knolles were married in 1680 (Cork Marriage Licence Bonds). They had three daughters.

Mary Hewytt (?-1684)

Mary Hewytt was born on an unknown date probably in Co Cork, the daughter of Thomas Hewytt of Clancoole and an unknown woman. As she was married in 1681 and had children in 1682 and 1684, she was probably born in the 1650s or early 1660s and may have been the sister of the Thomas Hewytt who married Jane Hungerford in 1686 in Cork.

A clip of the will of John Becher

George Synge (c1649-1692)

George Synge was born about 1649, Co Cork, the youngest son of George Synge, Bishop of Cloyne, and his second wife Elizabeth Stevens.
He was tutored by Mr Scroggs and entered Trinity College Dublin as a pensioner on 27 February (1665) 1666 aged 16 years (Alumni Dublinenses 1924 p 798). He received the MA about 1673 and the LLD about 1683.

Edward Cranfield (?1641-1700)

Edward Cranfield was born at unknown date, probably in Barbados, the son of Edward Cranfield and Elizabeth Parker. He was born after his father’s arrival in Barbados in 1633 and before his father’s death in 1649.
Edward Cranfield was raised in Barbados and appears to have been resident there as late as 1662 when he sold 360 acres of land to Nathaniel Kingsland for “a valuable sum of sugar” (Genealogies of Barbados Families p 371). By 1663 he was in London when he launched a suit against his uncle Lord Morley concerning the administration of the affairs of his mother Elizabeth, who had been declared to be a lunatic and had left unadministered parts of his father’s estate (Lords Journals v XI p 574).

Mary Bush (1662-1750)

Mary Bush was born in 1662 at Bath, Somerset, the daughter of John Bush and Ann Chapman. She was baptised on 27 December 1662 at Bath Abbey (Bath Abbey Registers).
Mary was the eldest surviving child of her parents, and was related to many of Bath’s most prominent families who, like her father, served as aldermen and mayors of the Bath Corporation.

Elizabeth Turner (?1647-c1721)

Elizabeth Turner was born on an unknown date, the daughter of Henry Turner and Dorothy Boyle. As her youngest child was born in 1688 Elizabeth must have been born after 1642, and before the death of her father Henry in 1653.
As Elizabeth’s father died when she was a young child. She was probably raised by her mother and her stepfather Thomas Roberts, a clergyman in the Dioceses of Cork and Ross and of Cloyne who died in 1664.