Marlborough, Sarah Jennings, duchess of


Marlborough, Sarah Jennings, duchess of

biographical name

(born May 29, 1660, Sandridge, Hertfordshire, Eng.—died Oct. 18, 1744, London) Wife of John Churchill, duke of Marlborough. A childhood friend of Princess (later Queen) Anne, she entered the household of Anne's father, the duke of York. She married Churchill in 1678 and served as a lady of the bedchamber after Anne's marriage (1683). When Anne acceded to the throne (1694), the Marlboroughs enjoyed great favour at court. Sarah's influence grew until her strong Whig sympathies alienated Anne, who dismissed her in 1711. The Marlboroughs retired to Blenheim Palace, which Sarah completed building after her husband's death in 1722.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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