Anne de Courcy

Shock tactics: the flamboyant life of a Hanoverian maid of honour

Elizabeth Chudleigh courted scandal all her life, and her secret marriage and trial for bigamy are vividly described by Catherine Ostler

Elizabeth Chudleigh as Iphigenia at the Venetian ambassador’s masquerade. Credit: Bridgeman Images

At the masquerade celebrating the end of the War of Austrian Succession no one could take their eyes off the beautiful Elizabeth Chudleigh. She had come, she said, as ‘Iphigenia, ready for the sacrifice’, and it was what she was wearing — or to all appearances not wearing — that caused a sensation that lasted for months.

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