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Margaret Elizabeth Child-Villiers (née Leigh), Countess of Jersey as Anne of Austria

5 of 8 portraits of Margaret Elizabeth Child-Villiers (née Leigh), Countess of Jersey

Margaret Elizabeth Child-Villiers (née Leigh), Countess of Jersey as Anne of Austria

by Alexander Bassano, photogravure by Walker & Boutall
photogravure, 1897; published 1899
6 1/8 in. x 4 1/4 in. (157 mm x 109 mm) image size
Purchased, 1975
Photographs Collection
NPG Ax41064


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The burning of Benin city by Britain takes place, known also as the Punitive Exhibition of 1897. The excursion, led by Admiral Sir Harry Rawson, was a response to an attack by Benin warriors on a British delegation sent to settle a dispute over customs duties collected by British traders. During the expedition the British Admiralty destroyed much of the city's treasured art, including the Benin Bronzes, auctioning off the rest as war booty to recoup costs.

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Kenton Brandt

8 April 2017, 21:51

Margaret Elizabeth Leigh (29 October 1849 – 22 May 1945), later Margaret Elizabeth Leigh Child-Villiers, Countess of Jersey, was an English noblewoman, activist, writer and hymn-writer.

Biography
She was the daughter and eldest child of William Henry Leigh, 2nd Baron Leigh. On 19 September 1872 she married Victor Child Villiers, 7th Earl of Jersey. They had six children:

George Henry Robert Child Villiers, 8th Earl of Jersey (1873–1923)
Lady Margaret Child Villiers (1874–1874), died in infancy.
Lady Margaret Child Villiers (1875–1959), married Walter Rice, 7th Baron Dynevor, and had issue.
Lady Mary Julia Child Villiers (1877–1933), married Thomas Pakenham, 5th Earl of Longford, and had issue.
Lady Beatrice Child Villiers (1880–1970), married Edward Plunkett, 18th Baron of Dunsany, and had issue.
Hon. Arthur George Child Villiers (1883–1969)[1]
She was the founding president (1901–14) of the Victoria League and was known as an opponent of women's suffrage. She was the author of travel articles, children's plays, verse and hymns. In 1871 the Religious Tract Society published a small collection of her hymns and poems under the title of Hymns and Poems for very Little Children. A second series under the same title appeared in 1875. Six of these hymns were included in W. R. Stevenson's School Hymnal, 1880. Some of these are repeated in the Voice of Praise (London S. S. Union) and other collections.[2]

In 1920 she published A brief history of Osterly Park (her husband's seat) and in 1922 Fifty-One Years of Victorian Life.[3]

In 1903, she laid the foundation stone of Brentford Library,[4] and five years later she formally opened Hove Library.[5]

She was appointed a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1927. Having suffered a stroke in 1909, Lord Jersey died at Osterley Park, Middlesex,[6] in May 1915, aged 70 - Margaret survived her husband by 30 years and died at Middleton Park, Oxfordshire,[6] in May 1945, aged 95.[1][6]

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William Henry Leigh, 2nd Baron Leigh
William Henry Leigh, 2nd Baron Leigh PC (January 17, 1824 - October 21, 1905) was a British politician.

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