The German Princess: Obit 1673

Eynon Smart traces the career of ‘that famous Cheat’, Mary Carleton, known to the Restoration world as ‘the German Princess’.

On January 22nd, 1673, Mary Moders was hanged at Tyburn for stealing a piece of plate.

She was better known to the public of the time as Mary Carleton, the ‘German Princess’, who had acquired wide notoriety ten years before, and the distinction of a place in the State Trials:

‘The Trial of MARY MODERS, alias STEDMAN, styled the German Princess, at the Old Bailey, for Bigamy: 15 CHARLES II A.D. 1663’.

The account is preceded by the trial of Thomas Tonge and others; it is followed by,

‘Proceedings, in the House of Commons, respecting a Message, alleged to have been carried by the Earl of Bristol to the King from Sir RICHARD TEMPLE, undertaking that the King’s Revenue should be settled’.

Both of them, and especially the second, provide fascinating lights on the period; but neither is more interesting than Mary Carleton’s low-life bigamy.

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