Frances Boscawen

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Frances Evelyn Boscawen née Glanville (23 Jul 1719 – 26 Feb 1805)

Frances Evelyn "Fanny" Boscawen (née Glanville) (23 July 1719 – 26 February 1805) was known as a literary hostess, correspondent and member of the Bluestockings Society.[1] She was born Frances Evelyn Glanville on 23 July 1719 at St Clere, Kemsing, Kent. In 1742 she married Edward Boscawen (1711–1761). When his navy work took him away from home, his wife would send him passages from her journal, some of which were later published.[1][2][3]


Their children were:

After Boscawen's death in 1761, Frances returned to her London house at 14 South Audley St, where she became an important hostess of Bluestocking meetings. Her guests included Elizabeth Montagu, Dr Johnson, James Boswell, Joshua Reynolds, Frances Reynolds, Elizabeth Carter, and later Hannah More, who described her as "sage" in her 1782 poem The Bas Bleu, or, Conversation, published in 1784.[7] Her widowhood inspired Edward Young's 1761 poem Resignation.[1] She "was widely known in literary London as a model letter-writer and conversationalist, prized for her wit, elegance, and warm heart," according to a present-day scholar.[1][8]

Frances died at home in London on 26 February 1805[1] and is buried at St Michael Penkevil church in Truro[9].


  1. ^ a b c d e Eger, Elizabeth. "Boscawen, Frances Evelyn (1719–1805)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/47078.(Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ^ Aspinall-Oglander, Cecil Faber; Frances E. G. Boscawen (1940). Admiral's wife; being the life and letters of the Hon. Mrs. Edward Boscawen from 1719 to 1761. London: Longmans, Green and Co.
  3. ^ Aspinall-Oglander, Cecil Faber; Frances E. G. Boscawen (1943). Admiral's Widow: Being the Life and Letters of the Hon. Mrs. Edward Boscawen from 1761 to 1805. London: Hogarth Press.
  4. ^ Admiral Hon. John Leveson-Gower and Frances Boscawen. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  5. ^ Beaufort, D. Cracroft's Peerage, online. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
  6. ^ Gainsborough's wife Margaret Burr was an illegitimate daughter of the 3rd Duke of Beaufort and so a cousin of the young duke. His father, the 4th Duke (1709–1756), settled a small annuity of £200 on her when she married Gainsborough in 1746. Margaret is not listed in the online peerage references under her ducal father (he officially died without issue), but can be found through a search for her antecedents.
  7. ^ More, Hannah (1786). Florio, a tale for fine gentlemen and fine ladies; and, The bas bleu, or, Conversation two poems. London: T. Cadell. p. 86.
  8. ^ Frances Boscawen Reinventing the Feminine: Bluestocking Women Writers in 18th Century London Archived 2013-01-21 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Record for Frances Boscawen on

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