Sunday, February 28, 2010
Letters from a Regency Lady
Regency Letters Three
To Captain Robert Jenson, from his sister Lady Horatia Melton. 22nd February 1816
My very dear Robert
It is with the greatest sadness that I write to tell you of our sister's loss. Words cannot express what I feel for her and I know that you too will feel as I. She is prostrate with grief and cannot be comforted. Mama has begged me to go to them and so I shall. Melton is not pleased but for the moment his feelings shall not weigh with me.
It is confirmed that Melton is unfaithful again. The lady in question was at pains to make the situation clear and if I am to believe her she is already carrying the child of their union. Perhaps I should have confronted him and demanded the truth but I find that I mind less than I once did. I shall go to my sister and stay for as long as she needs me. Melton may fetch me when he is ready to be a husband again. You will be shocked, dearest, when I tell you that your sister has contemplated divorce. If it were not that I know Melton would never agree, I should have spoken to him. No, do not frown and lecture me, Robert. It is only in my letters to you that I would discuss such a shocking step.
You will think your sister only writes to you of bad news so I shall tell you that I have made a new friend. We met first at the Regent's ball and again a few days later. However, our friendship did not truly begin until we both visited the new art gallery in Bond Street. It seems we have the same taste in pictures for we both stood staring at one particular picture of a child with a dog. I said that I should like to purchase it but must wait for my allowance next month. He offered to make me a gift of the picture. Naturally I refused. We walked together in the park and parted on the easiest of terms. This morning the picture was delivered to me. There was no message of any kind. However, I need none for I am certain that my new friend bought it for me.
I ought to return the gift for it would be most improper of me to keep it, but do you know, I think I shall. Now you will think your sister entirely lost to impropriety and perhaps I am. I shall not tell you the name of my new friend for if you think hard you will know.
I shall write again soon, most probably from Bath for it is there that Lady Bathurst intends to take the water.
Your loving sister Horatia
I hope you are enjoying the letters. Love to all, Anne Herries