Evelyn (1847) The Life of Mrs. Godolphin – 1st


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John Evelyn of Wootton, Esq. The Life of Mrs. Godolphin. (London: William Pickering, 1847) New first published and Edited by Samuel Lord Bishop of Oxford, Chancellor of the Most Noble Order of the Garter. 1st edition.

12mo. xviii, 266 pages. Hardcover. Bound in dark maroon leather-covered beveled boards stamped in blind with four bands on spine, title stamped in gilt.  Marbled end papers, all edges gilt.

Condition: Good. Rear cover starting and needs to be addressed. Foxing on Frontispiece with transfer to title page.  Gift inscription from 1869 on verso of first free end paper. Modern bookplate sloppily pasted to first blank page. Small chip on half-title.  Pencil notes on first blank page and on last blank age. Scattered foxing at rear of book.

Margaret Blagge was probably born in London on 2 August 1652 to Colonel Thomas Blagge and his wife. Her father who was a Royalist died in 1660.

In about 1666 she took on the role of Maid of Honour to Anne Hyde who was the Duchess of York. When the duchess died in 1671 she was employed in the same role by the Queen.

She chose John Evelyn as a mentor and “spiritual father” in 1672. Margaret was twenty and Evelyn was 52 and he advised her on religious learning and worship. Evelyn would write a book about her life.

She married Sidney Godolphin on 16 May 1676 when she was a maid of court.