Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester
Robert Devereux, the Earl of Essex. He was Elizabeth's favourite toward the end of her life. His mother was Lettice Knollys, Elizabeth's cousin . His step-father was Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester (see separate pin). After Leicester died, his step-son tried to step into his place at court. But Essex was dangerously unstable, and eventually tried to lead a rebellion against Elizabeth. It failed miserably, and Elizabeth had him executed.
Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, c. 1564. In the background are the devices of the Order of Saint Michael and the Order of the Garter; Robert Dudley was a knight of both. Born 24 June 1532 Died 4 September 1588 (aged 56) Cornbury, Oxfordshire Resting place Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick Title Earl of Leicester Tenure 1564–1588 Other titles-Baron of Denbigh Spouses- Amy Robsart Lettice Knollys
Lettice Knollys, great-niece of Anne Boleyn, Granddaughter of Mary Boleyn Laetitia Knollys, Countess of Essex and Leicester (November 1543 - 25 December 1634), normally referred to as Lettice Knollys, was born in Rotherfield Greys, Oxfordshire. She was the mother of Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, Queen Elizabeth I's famous courtier. In her second marriage, Lettice Knollys was wife to Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester Elizabeth I's favorite. Elizabeth hated her for it.
A pair of miniature paintings thought to have been commissioned by Elizabeth I to mark the end of her relationship with Robert Dudley. Elizabeth I often commissioned miniatures as personal gifts. These were made to mark the end of the affair. They can be dated to 1575. It is the year when Robert Dudley finally gave up his hope of marrying Queen Elizabeth I. Both Elizabeth I & the Earl of Leicester were patrons of the artist, Nicholas Hilliard, "the father of miniatures".