This is the portrait of Lucy Russell, Countess of Bedford, dressed in her masque costume for Ben Jonson's Masque Hymenaei (1606) for the marriage of the Earl of Essex and Lady Frances Howard. The marriage ended in divorce and led to one of the most notorious scandals of the age. One basis for Prynne's tirade against masques is the fact that in these court entertainments Queens and aristocratic ladies display themselves, he thought, indecently and scandalously. Courtesy of the Marquess of Tavistock and the Trustees of the Bedford Estates.
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