صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

l!

COURT AND FASHIONABLE

MAGAZINE,

For MARCH, 1809.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES

OF

ILLUSTRIOUS LADIES.

Che Fartp-third Pumber.

THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LADY CHARLOTTE DUNCOMBE.

LADY CHARLOTTE DUNCOMBE, of the portrait, our readers will remark that whose Portrait, from the fascinating pencil | the present Print is engraven in the most of Hoppner, is prefixed to the present || prominent chalk manner, so as to preserve Number of La Belle Assembléc, is the only the air, the taste, and full freedom of the daughter of William, Earl of Dartmouth original drawing. Some of our correspon. (the present Lord Chamberlain), by Frances dents have imagined, on this account, that Catharine, sole daughter and heiress of Sir | the Portrait was unfinished and imperfectly Charles Gounter Nicoll, K. B.

executed; but the amateur will imme. Her Ladyship is married to Charles | diately decide, that the value of the Duncombe, Esq. eldest son of Charles | Print is inereased by this fidelity and adSlingsby Duncombe, of Duncombe Park, herence to the style of the original master. in the county of York.

Much of the beauty of the chalk engravo The painting, from which we have ob- ing depends upon its close imitation of the tained an exclusive permission to copy the || freedom of touch, and the bold carelessness present Portrait, was executed by Mr. l of drawing, and a laborious finishing, Hoppner a few years since, and is now in and too attentive polish would perhaps the possession of the Hon. and Rev. Edward hazard the resemblance of the Print to the Legge.

character of the origival, without improv. In order to retain the decided character of ing the engraving in any other quality. the Painter and the peculiar characteristics

[ocr errors]

ORIGINAL COMMUNICATIONS.

HYMEN.EA IN SEARCH OF A HUSBAND.

MR. EDITOR,

office during the last twelve years, and it I am one of those beings of whom it is with regret I have to add, that in all is very difficult to say whether they are to this time, and with the selection out of be envied or pitied.-If the possessor of an many, I have never been able to make such ample fortune, of a good person, and a a choice as my understanding approved. . tolerable understanding, be sufficient to|| Perhaps, you may bere feel inclined render a woman an object of envy to some to apply 10 me the common adage, of her sex, llymenæa is, in these poiuts, “ More nice than wise," but before you enost assuredly to be envied.-But, on the adopt this conclusion, have the goodness other hand, if those are to be piticd on to read my statement, and give some attenwhom all such advantages are nearly tion to my reasons. thrown away, w!lo has a sufficient fortune My failer was one of those country without being enabled to employ it in the gentlemen who seem to have no other way she wislies, who has personal beauty purpose or ob'ect in life than to inheritand without having obtained a lover whom she transmit an estate ofibree thousand pounds cau esteem, and whose understanding is as a year in the line of lineal descent. He uscle:s as her fortune, Hymenxa is to be was a country gentleman, in the true sense pitied. I wish to stand well with you, Mr. Pof the word, with a tolerable understanding, Editor, and therefore that you may not ! and about as much of manners and decorum imagine my dissatisfaction to arise fron as his own dogs. He employed the winter any of those fanciful causes, by which in shooting, and the autumn in hunting, people so ingeniously torment themselves, and in the two other seasons of the year, shall make no farther preface or apology, when the weekly justice meeting did not but enter at once on the pith and marrow, vecessarily require his attention, in sleepof my subject; you will best understanding. His education was precisely squared this by the narrative of my cperations, ac- with his style and manner of life, he knew tive and passive, for the last ten years.

the point of excellence in a pointer, and One thing, however, it is necessary to would give the price of one of his best acres premise as the clue 10 this narration. You for a greyhound. He was well read in must know, Mr. Editor, that I am now in Burii's Justice, but was so apt to mistake my twenty cighth year, and a single woman. the application of the cases, that he had I uecd say no more, I think, as to my pre-been two or thiee times before the Court vious assertion, that my dissatisfaction is of King's Bench. His table was hospitable not founded in any fanciful causes; and beyond his income, and, in a word, he was wheu I add, that my fortune does not fall generally reputed a good neighbour, and a short of a good forty thousand pounds in very worthy member of the peace. the five per ceuts, and that, as I have said My mother was in overy possible respect before, I ain generally acknowledged by|| a totally different woman. She was one of the gentlemen not to be wanting in per. the numerous daughters of a decayed noblesonal beauty, you will very naturally con- man, and had therefore brought nothing to clude, that ny present state is not for want my father, but herself. But in this one of offers.mile, Sir, I have had as many word, was included every thing which offers as might have been anticipated from would have made a wise man happy, and this caumeration of my advantages, and I have satisfi. I the most unreasonable one. have had no difficulty in consequence bu To an uncoinmon share of personal beauty io Inake my selection. I have excried alishe added a still more uncommon good tile powers of my uuderstanding in this sense, and such a sweetness of temper, asd

1

constant complacency, as threw a charm | avail myself of it as an amusement, if not to over every society in wbich she moved. | practise it as a science. I had learned My father was certainly very ill calculated enough of French not to be dumb in the for a woman like this, but being himself a || presence of a foreigner, but as I see no very good tempered man, he compensated sufficient cause for deception, I must be by this quality for many defects. They | free to avow that this was the extent of my accordingly lived very happy together, and acquisition. I could neither read Leonora had less bickerings than fall to the share of in German, nor the indecencies of Bocthe greater part of married families.

caccio in Italian ;-I had attended no lecMy brother and myself were the only tures at the Institution ;~I knew nothing children of this union. My brother, after of the laws of the circulation of the blood, having been kept at home, in despite of my and no more of those of gravity, than that mother's remonstrances, till nearly twelvell if a tea-cup slipt from my hands it must years old, was then dispatched to learn necessarily fall to the ground. But when Latin and writing at a school about ten | Lady Letitia Medlecot, one of the submiles from my father's residence. Here, scribers and patronesses of this Institution, being the Squire of the school, and the once asked me, why it fell to the ground, vanity of the master being tickled by hav- | and by what laws it was attracted ?—what jog such a scholar, Squire Dick, as he was was the cause of its fall, and the measure of called, was even more indulged than at its descent ? I must confess that she puzzled bome. If he had not learned his lessons me. I knew of no cause but the rebefore the usual hour of the scholars being moval of my hand, and of no reason for its set at liberty to their play, the lesson of the breaking with so much force, but that it morning was passed over to the lesson of had fallen upon a marble hearth. the afternoon, and if in the afternoon he Being a very tall girl of my age, my was still backward, his task was remitted to father thought it bigh time tliat I should the succeeding morning. He was intro- make a proper match, as he expressed it, duced and called out to every visitor of his a determination to which he was hastened master, so that, with such indulgences, he by a circums!ance of considerable weight. would have been a miracle of capacity, if In his immediate neighbourhood were two in eight years he had acquired any thing country gentlemen, with both of whom he beyond his grammar and the first lines of was in the habits of strict intimacy, and for Ovid My brother's capacity was no such both of whom he entertained an equal remiracle, and he accordingly, after a course spect, for there was no perceptible differof education of eight years at a private ence in their estates, and little in their school in the country, returned as might talents as sportsmen. One of them, Sir have been expected, but a very few degrees Toby Wilkins, was a young heir just arrive from a perfect ignoramus.

ed at his majority; of robust health, and Under the immediate care of my mother, of never ceasing good-humour. The other. the course, and therefore very naturally gentleman was an only son, a young man the result of my education, had been very of great expectations, and reputed the most different. My mother loved me with the sober sensible youth in the county; he had most maternal affection, but had too good been chiefly educated under an old Admian understanding to suffer the effect of ral, his uncle, and at the death of whom this tenderness to relax the necessary dis- he was expected to inherit his immense cipline of early education. My capacity wealth. being quick I improved very rapidly under My father addressing me one day, whilst such an instructress, so that at the age of I was working at my needle with my sixteen, I had acquired whatever is deemed mother, told me, that he put the finishing necessary to female education. I could hand to a job that morning which would not indeed paint on velvet, nor dance with make a woman of me; that nothing now the figurantes at the Opera; but I could remained but to conduct myself in a man. draw with sufficient skill to copy the land- ner worthy of his kindness, and thereby scapes in the neighbourhood of my father's justify all the praises which he had given house; and as to music, I kney enough to me. My mother here demanding an ex. No. XLIII.-Vol. VI.

K

[ocr errors]

planation." Why you must know," said | feelings and reason shall impel you. - You he, “that Sir Toby Wilkins rode home are at perfect liberty." with me yesterday from the justice meeting Sir Toby called on me the same day ; at B. In the course of our journey the informed me what he had communicated to young man seemed to have something on my father, and hoped my approbation.-I his mind, and at length with great dilli. | very naturally suggested that we were as culty brought forth; that he had taken ayet early acquaintance; in a word, the great fancy to Hymenæa, and that if I had | business immediately took its proper shape, no objection, and his mother should have the two gentlemen became my professed none, he should wish to be permitted to lovers, and without presuming that either visit her as her intended busband. I gave had more right than the other, each enmy consent; and I feel some surprize that deavoured to recommend himself. he has not already availed himself of it, and Sir Toby is a character which I conceive made you a visit to day. However, when myself to have already sufficiently describ. I thought last night in my bed on what I ed. He was a good-natured country Barohad done, I began to think that I had been | net, with a good estate, and robust labit, too precipitate, and that something was duel managing what business he had with suffi. to Hymensa herself, and that she should cient discretion, and by no means deficient have a choice. I formed my resolution in a plain understanding. Such was Sir accordingly, and ordered my horse early | Toby:--My other lover, Mr. Honeycomb, this morning for the purpose of execut or rather Major Honeycomb, was totally & ing it. And I have so executed it; and different man; he had been very well Now guess what it is."-"

:-“It can be but one educated, having been brought up at llarthing," said my mother; " you doubtless row, and thence passed through the rerode over to Sir Toby":"No such thing," | gular collegiate course at Oxford. replied my father.-“ No, my dear, Siril old uncle, an Admiral, who had made an Toby offered himself to my daughter ; but immense fortune by prize money, having one, as you know, makes no choice ; so I taken a fancy to him, bad taken him to live rode over to Mr.Honeycom), and made an with himself. Mr. Honeycomb was natur. offer of my daughter to his eldest son, pro- | ally rather a calculating man, and with this vided the parties could be agreeable to turn of mind was not insensible to the adeach other. So you see that I have kept vantages of his situation. He accordingly my word to you, Madam,” said he, turning applied bimself to every effort which could to my mother;" and I have given Hymenäa confirm or augment the favour of the the power of choosing."

Admiral, and had thus become habituated My mother smiled at my father's plan ; at once to the most abject servility, and and after he had withdrawn inquired of me, || the most narrow selfishness. Every word if either of the gentlemen had ever spoken and every look was measured. He almost to me ou the subject. I replied that Sir thought as well as spoke by an adopted Toby had certainly made those kind of rule. Such was my second lover, the justic addresses from which I might fairly silver-tougued Mr. Honeycomb. presume that I was not indifferent to him; Shall I confess to you, Sir, that though but that on my part, though I liked his neither of these gentlemen were much to good-humour, and was accustomed to him my taste, I had still so much of the vanity as an early friend, I had no decided sential of my sex that I was pleased with their ment either for or against him.—“Well," addresses, and thicrefore had 110 intention replied my mother, “ you must receive of rejecting either, and with iny good will these gentlemen according to your father's they might have dangled about me till wishes, but you have his permission to this time. But Sir Toby, having most inake a choice, and you have mine to re. frequent opportunities, had insensibly ject both if your understanding should so gained on my attention, and I was so acdispose you. But as you owe some re- customed to see him, that I felt a kind of spect to your father's desire, you must not vacuum wlien he was not present. This decide abruptly.--See them both; see the feeling is certainly not love, but at a certain character of both, and then act as your l age is so like it, and therefore is so fre

[ocr errors]

quepúly mistaken for it, that I am persuad- and simple words, he wanted nothing but
ed from what bas fallen within my own fortune, and this lie certainly most com-
observation, that the greater partoffashion- | pletely wanted.
able marriages are entirely founded upon Whether this gentleman was struck with
it. Be this as it may, Sir Toby had once me, or fancied that I was so with him,
pressed me hard to consent to our union ; || I know not, but his first visit was soon
the opportunity, as the poets say, was fa- followed by a second, and by rendering
vourable to bim ; we were returning from himself agreeable to my father he received
an assize ball by noonlight, and my father | a general and daily invitation toour house.
bad got so intoxicated at the dinner that he Insensibly the whole of his time was spent
was senseless, and in a profound sleep in one with us.-To make short of the matter, we
corner of the coach. Sir Toby and myself soon became agreeable to each other, and
were on the opposite seat; the moon, as I as usually happens in such cases, soon
said, shone bright, and it being midsummer | made the discovery of our secret. The dil
the nightingales were singing: you will ference of fortune necessarily compelled us
allow that this was a happy moment for a to discretion and present secrecy, but we
lorer. Not to go into the detail of a novel, coutinued to cherish our mutual attach-
Sir Toby pressed my consent to a dayment in the confidence that an opportunity
which he pamed, and being perfectly in might at length occur which would favour
good-humour with him, I was on the point the discovery of it to niy father.
of pronouncing my irrevocable doom, Things were in this situation; Sir Toby
when one of those accideuts which at once confined to his room, but daily writing to
vary the whole tenour of life, interposed in me, whilst another had totally supplanted
the very moment that the word was on my him; in this manner, I say, were our affairs
lips. Sir Toby happened to tread on my situated when a new occurrence took
father's gouty foot; he awoke in the instant, | place in my family. My brother had been
and the couversation necessarily took an- || long paying his addresses to Lady Emily
other turo.

Belcour, and after much difficulty on the
On the following day whilst I was ex.

side of the noblenian her father, the union pecting the usual visit of Sir Toby, I was was to take place on the following consummoned down to a gentleman who dition,—that in the event that my brother wished personally to speak to me from him. || had no children by Lady Emily, the family To make short of the matter, Sir Toby had estate of my father was still to pass into slipped his shoulder in a coursing match || the family of the old Earl, Lady Emily's the same morning, and had sent me the father. My father, in his eagerness for information as an apology for his absence. this splendid match, overlooked the pecu. The hurt was not indeed dangerous, though liar modesty of this proposal ; he accord. such as necessarily to contine him to his | ingly consented to it, but as the estate was chamber for a few days.

a general entail, it was necessary likewise The gentleman who brought me this in- i to procure my consent. I gave it most formation, and whom I shall call Horatio, cheerfully. “There is one other requisite," as he is now living, and might not approve said my father.--" Your two lovers, Mr. the publicity of his real name, was the son Honeycomb and Sir Toby, are addressing of an officer of very small fortune ; his in- you under the impression that the estate is terest, however, had procured the young || yours on failure of issue, or the death of man a commission, and he had been quar your brother ; I am sorry to say that the tered in the neighbourhood of Sir Toby. || latter is but too probable from his late state I will not lose myself in words by a detailed of health. It is necessary, therefore, that description of this young Lieutenant, whom I should inform these gentlemen how the you may readily imagine a new lover. matter now stands, that all may be open Suffice it to say, that to the good-humour and mutually understood between us; I of Sir Toby he added the manners of the shall do it instantly," accomplished gentleman, and the know The letters were accordingly sent the ledge of the scholar refined and familiarized same day. Sir Toby immediately answerby a converse with the world. In plain ed, that he had addressed me for myself

K%

« السابقةمتابعة »