Ponsonby, Henrietta Frances, Countess of Bessborough (1761 -1821)

Henrietta Frances Spencer (“Harriet”) was the second daughter of John, 1st Earl Spencer, and Georgiana, elder daughter of Stephen Poyntz, of Midgham in Berkshire. Her sister was Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire. She married, 27 November 1780, Frederick Ponsonby, 3rd Earl of Bessborough. The difficult marriage, and was compounded by the excessive gambling habits of both husband and wife, and the extra-marital affairs of Harriet, The playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan, and Granville Leveson-Gower, 1st Earl Granville, by whom she bore two illegitimate children. Harriet died on November 11, 1821 in Florence. Stamp 1 is the same as stamp 2 of William Francis Ponsonby, her third son.

Seat / Residence(s): Bishopscourt, Kildare
Stamp(s) Stamp Information
Ponsonby, Henrietta Frances, Countess of Bessborough  (1761 - 1821) (Stamp 1) Arms: Quarterly 1 & 4. Gules a chevron between three combs argent (Ponsonby) 2 & 3. Azure (should be sable) a lion passant gardant argent, a chief engrailed or (Margetson) impaling on an escutcheon of pretence Quarterly 1 & 4. Three bulls passant in pale (Ashley) 2 & 3. Gules a bend engrailed between six lions rampant (Cooper)
Quarterings: 1 & 4. Gules a chevron between three combs argent (Ponsonby) 2 & 3. Azure (should be sable) a lion passant gardant argent, a chief engrailed or (Margetson)
Impalement: Quarterly 1 & 4. Three bulls passant in pale (Ashley) 2 & 3. Gules a bend engrailed between six lions rampant (Cooper)
Ponsonby, Henrietta Frances, Countess of Bessborough  (1761 - 1821) (Stamp 2) Monogram: H F C B
Coronet: Countess
Heraldic Charges: chevron between, Heraldic Charges: lion passant gardant, Heraldic Charges: chief engrailed, Heraldic Charges: bulls (3), Heraldic Charges: bend engrailed between, Heraldic Charges: combs (3), Heraldic Charges: lions rampant (6)
Ponsonby, Henrietta Frances, Countess of Bessborough  (1761 - 1821) (Stamp 3) Monogram: H F C B
Coronet: Countess
Monogram: H B
Coronet: Countess