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Old 05-14-2010, 09:13 PM
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Philadelphia, United States
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Originally Posted by Helena View Post
Is there any thruth in the rumours that Willem III had a gay relationship with Hans Willem Bentinck, the first Earl of Portland.

Another thing I heard is that the States of Gueldres offerend Willem III the title Duke of Guelders. Why didn´t this work out?
If William had any sort of intimate relationship with a man (this is doubtful) it would have been with Arnold Joost van Keppel, 1st Earl of Albemarle, the King's Master of the Robes (who just happens to be a direct ancestor of Camilla Parker Bowles). This man rivaled Bentinck for William's affections, but these favors were probably not romantic. Keppel was something of a womanizer anyway. And the Earl of Portland never gave any indication to William or to the rest of the world that he was 'overly fond' of the king in that manner. Of course some authors like to argue that Jacobite claims were correct and that Keppel had been William's lover from early on in life, before the Glorious Revolution. However, this is debatable and has not been proven to be true.

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Old 05-15-2010, 08:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Marengo View Post
I m not sure if William ever had a mistress actually. I believe there were rumours about Elizabeth Villiers, who was aknowledged as his mistress but the nature of their relationship is unclear. Historians still disagree about William's (supposed) homosexuality though.

In any case, Mary was pregnant but miscarried. After an illness (I do not know which one) she was unable to have children anymore.
In my personal opinion, I'd say that sex did enter into the relationship, but I doubt that the affair was as notorious as most historians make it out to be. William was so discreet about this liaison that no one knows when he even saw Elizabeth. I read that he was ashamed of his errors and this could explain not only his discretion, but also the fact that until he decided to bestow upon Mistress Villiers confiscated Irish estates belonging to James II, he never so much as furnished apartments for her, which was the usual treatment. Elizabeth was a force in politics, and a great conversationalist, but since William's interest in sex was far from being strong, it's doubtful their meetings were always of a romantic nature.

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