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Elizabeth Bridget Armitstead (1750–1842) by unknown artist ? reserved

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Armitstead [née Cane; married name Fox], Elizabeth Bridget (1750–1842), courtesan, was, according to an entry in her journal, born on 11 July 1750. Her parentage, place of birth, and reason for changing her maiden name to Armitstead are unknown, as are the circumstances surrounding her emergence as a prominent courtesan. About 1774 she became the mistress of ...

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Cuyler [married name Rice], Margaret (1758–1814), actress and courtesan, was allegedly the daughter of an army officer who rose to the rank of lieutenant-colonel in an Irish regiment and died in 1790, leaving his fortune to his mistress. For this information, and for details about her early life which may have owed more to ...

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Dawes [married name de Feuchères], Sophie, Baroness de Feuchères in the French nobility (1792–1840), adventuress and courtesan, was the daughter of Richard Daw or Dawes, a drunken fisherman and smuggler of St Helens, Isle of Wight, and Jane Callaway. Her parents were probably not married, her mother being recorded as a spinster on her death certificate. ...

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Olive Baldwin and Thelma Wilson

Elliot, Ann (1743–1769), courtesan and actress, was born on 16 November 1743 in Tonbridge, Kent, the daughter of Richard Elliot (1706?–1771), the sexton of Tonbridge parish church, and his wife, Mary (1716–1748). She moved to London as a lady's servant, but was soon a high-class prostitute, using the name ...

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Elliott [Eliot; née Dalrymple], Grace [nicknamed Dally the Tall] (1754?–1823), courtesan and writer, was probably born in Edinburgh, the youngest daughter of Hew or Hugh Dalrymple (d. 1774), lawyer, and his wife, Grisel Craw (d. c.1765). She had at least one sister, ...

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Grace Elliott (1754?–1823) by Thomas Gainsborough, 1782? ? The Frick Collection, New York

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Catherine Maria Fischer [Kitty Fisher] (1741?–1767) by Sir Joshua Reynolds, c. 1759 [Cleopatra Dissolving the Pearl] Kenwood, Iveagh Bequest / ? English Heritage Photo Library (photographer Jeremy Edwards)

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Fischer [married name Norris], Catherine Maria [known as Kitty Fisher] (1741?–1767), courtesan, was probably the Catharine Fischer born on 1 June 1741 in London, the daughter of John Henry Fischer (d. in or before 1766) and his wife, Ann...

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Elizabeth Ann Haryett [Lizzie Howard], countess of Beauregard in the French nobility (bap. 1823?, d. 1865) by Sir William Charles Ross unknown collection / Christie's; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London

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Haryett [married name Trelawny], Elizabeth Ann [known as Lizzie Howard], countess of Beauregard in the French nobility (bap. 1823?, d. 1865), courtesan, was, like most of her kind, of obscure origins, but she has been tentatively identified with the Elizabeth Ann Haryett...

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Leeson [née Plunkett], Margaret (1727–1797), courtesan and writer, was born at Killough, co. Westmeath. The daughter of Matthew Plunkett, a Catholic landowner with estates at Corbetstown and Killough, and his wife, the former Miss A. O'Reilly, she was the third youngest of eight surviving siblings. Her early life was pleasant and she received 'the best education the county could afford' (...

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Mahon [née Tilson], Gertrude (b. 1752, d. in or after 1808), courtesan and actress, was born in Dublin on 15 April 1752, the daughter of James Tilson (c.1715–1764), diplomat, and his wife, Gertrude, dowager countess of Kerry (c.1720–1775)...

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Miller [née Haring], Millie (1922–1977), social worker and politician, was born at 9 Windsor Terrace, Hoxton, London, on 8 April 1922, the fourth of five children of Barney Haring (1881–1947), diamond polisher, and his wife, Sarah, née Zomerplaag (...

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Murray [née Rudman], Frances [Fanny] (1729–1778), courtesan, was, according to her Memoirs born as Frances Rudman at Bath, the only surviving triplet of Thomas Rudman (d. 1741), a musician. Hinde and others dispute this version of her birth and believe she came from ...

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Nesbitt [née Davis], Mary (1742/3–1825), courtesan and adventuress, was born Mary Davis, of unknown parentage, but was alleged to have been born 'in a wheelbarrow' in Covent Garden (History of the Tête-à-tête); she was also called Polly Davis. She was a strikingly beautiful artist's model, first sitting to ...

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Mary Nesbitt (1742/33–1825) by Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1781 reproduced by permission of the Trustees of the Wallace Collection, London

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Parsons, Anne [Nancy] [married name Anne Maynard, Viscountess Maynard] (c. 1735–1814/15), courtesan and political mistress, was said to have been the daughter of a Bond Street tailor. Her date of birth has not been ascertained, and estimates of her age in later life, being subject to a type of salacious exaggeration, yield only a roughly approximate year....

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Pearl, Cora [real name Emma Elizabeth Crouch] (1835?–1886), courtesan, was the second daughter of the six children of Frederick William Nicholls Crouch (1808–1896), a composer, and his wife, Lydia Pearson, a singer. Her date and place of birth are disputed, as she is believed to have forged her birth certificate, giving the date as 23 February 1842, and the place as ...

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Phillips [married name Muilman], Teresia Constantia (1709–1765), courtesan and memoirist, was born on 2 January 1709 at 'West-Chester' (Phillips, Apology, 1.20), part of Chester in Cheshire, the daughter of Thomas Phillips, a captain in the Grenadier Guards. According to her ...