Blessington, Marguerite, countess of, 1789–1849, English author and famous beauty, b. Ireland. At the age of 14 she was forced by her father into marriage with Capt. Maurice St. Leger Farmer, a sadist who abused her. She soon left him and after his death married (1818) the earl of Blessington. In 1822 she began a liaison with Count D'Orsay (husband of her stepdaughter), and with him, after Blessington's death, set up a brilliant salon at Gore House, Kensington. To meet expenses she wrote a number of popular novels. Her most successful work, however, is her graphic journal of her Conversations with Lord Byron (1834).
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