William Wycherley was a Restoration playwright, best known for his comedies The Country Wife (1672-3) and The Plain Dealer (1675). Wycherley moved in high society, and conducted several liaisons with aristocratic ladies, including the Duchess of Cleveland - one of Charles II's mistresses. A one-time favourite of the King, he lost the King's regard after entering into a secret marriage with the Countess of Drogheda. After her death, a dispute over her will led to Wycherley being thrown into debtor's prison, but he was liberated with the assistance of James II. On his deathbed, Wycherley married a 16-year-old girl in order to prevent his nephew from getting his inheritance. He died in 1715, aged 75.
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