Georgiana Spencer became Duchess of Devonshire on her marriage to the Duke in 1774, at the height of the Georgian period, a period of fashion, decadence, and political change. Spirited and adored by the public at large she quickly found her marriage to be a disappointment, defined by her duty to produce a male heir and the Duke’s philandering and callous indifference to her. Against this background, and with the pressures of an unfaithful husband, strict social pressures and constant public scrutiny, Georgiana falls passionately in love with
Ross Poldark, a rising young Whig politician.
My twenties were pretty crap. My career was absolutely amazing; in fact, I don’t think my career will ever get better than it was in my late teens, early twenties. But as a person, you’re changing so much and you’re trying to figure stuff out. Some people go wild and have a great time and throw caution to the wind, and I was the complete opposite. I was very shy. It took me a lot of years to try and stop pleasing a lot of people and allow myself to have fun. It’s the difficult thing of getting out of your own head. To stop going, ‘Oh, there’s something I should be doing, there’s a way I should be behaving, I should be dressing….’ All of those shoulds, you can drown in them.