inscribed lower left: The Lady Elizabeth Seymoure, / Heiress of William Marquis / of Hertforde, afterwards / married to Thomas, Earle / of Ailesbury and Elgin.
By descent from the sitter.
The sitter was the daughter of Henry Seymour, Lord Beauchamp (1626-1654), and his wife, Mary Capel, sister of the Earl of Essex (later Duchess of Beaufort). She was the granddaughter of William Seymour, 2nd Duke of Somerset (1588-1660) and the sister of William, 3rd Duke of Somerset (1654-1671). This first early portrait painted by Lely around 1660 predates her marriage to Thomas Bruce, 2nd Earl of Ailesbury in 1676. She died just twenty years later, but not before she had inherited the great Tottenham estates at Savernake from her brother, who died unmarried in 1671, thus bringing the estate into the Bruce family, in whose hands it has remained until the present day.
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