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Anne Villiers (c. 1610 – 15 December 1654) was an English noblewoman and Countess of Morton. She was famed for her beauty, bravery and loyalty to the throne. The first half of the 17th century closet drama Cicilia and Clorinda was dedicated to her.
Anne Villiers was the daughter of Sir Edward Villiers (c. 1574 – 7 September 1626) and his wife Barbara St. John, a daughter of Sir John St. John. She was the niece of the Duke of Buckingham, who was her father's half-brother. Anne Villiers' nieces were Elizabeth Villiers, mistress to William III, and Barbara Villiers, who was the mistress of Charles II of England and would be made Duchess of Cleveland in her own right. In April 1627, she married Robert Douglas, Lord Dalkeith, later the Earl of Morton.
The Earl and Countess of Morton had at least three children that lived to adulthood:
Lady Dalkeith, as she was styled at the time, was the godmother of Princess Henrietta. During the civil war, the infant princess, less than one month old, was left in Lady Dalkeith's care. After being besieged in Exeter by Parliamentary forces in April 1646, she was forced to expend her own funds to care for the princess. She refused to take the child to St. James Palace, endeavoring instead to convey her to France to be united with her mother, Queen Henrietta Maria. She disguised herself and the princess as peasants and fled to Dover and then France. Apparently, during the journey, the princess nearly revealed their identity by innocently informing the townspeople that she was not accustomed to dressing in such a shabby fashion. Nevertheless, they arrived safely. Lady Dalkeith's actions were well received and highly praised upon her arrival. Shortly after, her father-in-law died, making her Countess of Morton.
Despite efforts of conversion to Catholicism by the princess' mother and the child herself, Lady Morton remained a staunch Protestant throughout her time as Princess Henrietta's governess. Lady Morton lived in France as the princess' governess until 1651, when her husband, the Earl, died. She herself died in Scotland on 15 December 1654, of a sudden bout of fever.
For many years an exceptionally close friendship existed between Lady Morton and Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, a cousin by marriage, whose letters to her sometimes suggest feelings warmer than friendship. Eventually they quarreled, in slightly obscure circumstances, when she accused him of interfering with her marriage plans for her daughter Anne, and she broke off friendly relations, much to Clarendon's distress. A long projected second marriage between Lady Morton and John Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley of Stratton, never took place.