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ANNE TEMPLE, LADY LYTTELTON.
This beautiful but silly woman, the heroine of an agreeable, but scarcely decent, adventure in De Grammont's Memoirs, was Maid of Honour to Anne Hyde, Duchess of York. She appeared at Court when extremely young, and fortunately left it before she was much older.
Anne Temple was the daughter of Thomas Temple, Esq. MP of Frankton, Warwickshire, by Rebecca, daughter of Sir Nicholas Carew, Knight, of Beddington, in Surrey.
She no sooner appeared at the Court of Charles II, than she excited the attention of its libertine frequenters. The John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester and the handsome Sidney were suitors for her smiles, and, as she loved to be admired, her reputation very narrowly escaped being ruined by their dalliance.
"Miss Temple," says Count Hamilton, "was brown compared with Miss Jennings: she had a good shape, fine teeth, languishing eyes, a fresh complexion, an agreeable smile, and a lively air. Such was the outward form, and it would be difficult to describe the rest; for she was simple and vain, credulous and suspicious, coquettish and prudent, very conceited and very silly."
Anne Temple figures as the companion of Miss Hobart, a person who shared the strange moral peculiarities of Sappho, without a tittle of the genius of the Lesbian poetess. Fortunately, Miss Temple had scarcely been two years at Court, when an eligible offer of marriage gave her an opportunity of escaping from her dangerous post of Maid of Honor.
At the age of 18, she accepted the hand of Sir Charles Lyttelton, Knight, a gallant cavalier of 40, and owner of the afterwards classical seat of Hagley.
Sir Charles had formerly distinguished himself under the royal standard in the civil troubles, and since then had been governor of Jamaica, where he built the town of Port Royal. At the period of his marriage, Lyttelton was colonel of the Duke of York's regiment. Lyttelton afterwards rose to be a Brigadier-General, Governor of Sheerness, and sat as Member of Parliament for Bewdley.
Sir Charles Lyttelton MP seems to have experienced a severe struggle between his love for Anne Temple and his dread of her proving unfaithful to him after his marriage: however, he seems to have had no reason to complain of the conduct of his fair wife.
They appear to have led a domestic life, Lady Anne Temple Lyttelton bearing him 13 children, of whom there were five sons and eight daughters.
Sir Charles Lyttelton lived to 86, dying at Hagley on 2 May, 1716. Lady Anne survived him only two years, expiring, also at Hagley, on 27 August, 1718.
Lightly edited from https://books.google.com/books?pg=PA304&lpg=PA304…
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