Description: In this partial, 4-page letter of Sept 13, the writer who is well-acquainted gives a “little chit chat” to her “dear Richard and Eliza.” Her "chats" retell details about the marriage of King George to Princess Charlotte on Sept 11, 1776. Some observations are first hand, and other information is relayed to her through many acquaintances. Lord Harcourt and Lord Anson, who are in attendance to the Queen, are mentioned frequently in these pages. A Mr. Lane of Hillendon who knows a city gentleman witnesses Queen Charlotte being presented to the Duchess: “Nothing gave him more pleasure than seeing the first meeting when the Dutchess [sic] was first presented to her who was dressed and adorned as much as possible.” The Queen says to Lord Harcourt, “Are all English ladies as handsome as these. She had one glove off on [which] hand was a fine Bracelet of the Kings [sic] picture set with Diamonds & rows of Pearls.” We learn that the queen gets sick “from eating to [sic] much fruit,” but is pleased when she finally boards the barge and finds “a spinnet stand ready [which] she used very much all the way, the King sent a Band of musick to attend her . . . played God Save Great George our King . . . she . . . soon learnt it . . . sung it after super the night they was marryed by the Kings desire [sic].”
The writer has a passing view of the Queen from a New Norfolks street window, “the appearance to me was easy genteel and agreeable but not handsome . . . .” Another source of information is Mrs. Lethieullier who has visited Mrs. Featherston who attended the wedding and later was presented to the Queen. The writer records second-hand the details leading to the vows: “when the Bishop said wilt thou George have Charlotte he clapt his hand on his Breast & Said very loudly I will, the archbishop who christened the king marry him [sic]: for [which] reason the Bishop of London was not fixt . . . [sic].” We learn the “Queen speaks italian very well as does the King & french & some English, but says she did not learn that as never having any expectation of its being use to her [sic].” The letter ends with reference to the King of Prussia, who was responsible for this alliance, from whom the Princess has sought protection “for some of the poor inhabitance [sic] in her Brothers territorys [sic].”
Written on four sides of a folded 12” x 14” sheet of ivory laid paper.
Author: Letter is unsigned, but clearly is written by a woman well-acquainted with the British elite of the 1770s. Item #A01118
Condition: A few blots of the iron gall ink, fold lines, generally very good condition.