Charlotte Bridgeman's Journals

February 1846 - January 1857

Lady Charlotte Bridgeman's journals

Transcribed by Marianne van Dael - van Zelm Zwern

July 1848

London   1848, July 2

Sunday - A full square. Important conferences held at gates (cab standing waiting) about box for the Spitalfields ball. We three took the Sacrament before breakfast.

London   1848, July 4

Papa & I dined at Lady Norbury's. There were the Hoggs, Lady Bateman & Miss Hanbury & Mr. A., Mr. & Lady G. Rebon(?), the Yarde Bullers, Mr. Pierrepont, Lord Cranston, Mr. Parsons & Mr. Toler & Captain Broke. Emily Poler & Miss Mary Hogg played.

London   1848, July 5

Lucy & Mary went to a very good amateur concert at Mrs. Packe Reading's.

London   1848, July 6

Papa & my sisters went to the Dowager Duchess of Bedford's breakfast at Campden Hill. They afterwards dined at Lord & Lady Bridport's & went to an at home at Lady Jersey's. Meanwhile I went with Miss Baker to a concert at Mrs. Holmes's(?). Then did some shopping & called on Mrs. Simpson whom I found at home, with Miss Caesvelt too. After tea we took a walk in the park & coming home the Lady Gore's who were on their balcony invited us to go in & we staid with them will nearly 1/2 past 10. I like old Mrs. Gore very much.

London   1848, July 7

We went in the evening to the Spitalfields ball. We had through Mr. D. Astley's kindness procured tickets for us & the Tolers for a box at Drury Lane to see it from. We got there after being for ages & ages in a string, about 11 ock. & had the very greatest difficulty to get in, for we found that the box we had was one in which no one was allowed to go but those who had tickets for the ball too. So Papa was obliged to promise to send the money for ball tickets the next day before they would admit us. One party consisted of Lady Norbury & the 3 Tolers, Mr. Alex. Stuart, Mr. Bankes, Papa & we three, & Orlando came afterwards. It was a beautiful sight the whole thing was so well managed, so beautifully decorated & the dresses so very handsome. It attired all the kings & queens so un...(?) that it was very difficult to recognize many of them. Some looked handsome for it, & others it completely disfigured. We came away at 1/2 past 2. Just as we were coming out one of the kings went out & the crowd collected outside the door kissed him violently. Lady Londonderry, the Duchess of Beaufort & Lady C. Egerton had quadrilles. The Queens of England, the Houses of York & Lancaster & the Lace quadrilles.

London   1848, July 8

Mary & I went with Papa to a breakfast at Chesterfield House. It was a very bad day for it, pepetual showers, which were often heavy. Georgey was there in a high state of excitement. We came home soon after 1/2 past 6.

London   1848, July 9

Sunday - A pouring day, and we could not go to church till the evening service at St. Pauls when it had ceased raining but I had a headache & did not go. The Newports were to have taken me to Windsor to go to afternoon service at St. George's Chapel & had luncheon with Mrs. Somerset. It was quite out of the question in consequence of the rain. They came in to talk about Bathes & Washhouses. I am to go.

London   1848, July 10

Mary & I & Papa went to Mrs. Russell Ingram's concert, which was of the very best sort, as good as Lady Carringtons. Grisi, Alboni, Mario, Tamberini & Lablache. Mario sang my last year's favourite Chanson de Mai, and Letutuets(?) Ave Mario & Addio. & the whole selection was equally good.

London   1848, July 11

A most superb day for our water expedition. Sir Thomas Fremantle had made up a considerable party to go down the river in the Custom House Yacht - the Vigilent. We went to Hungerford stairs where we meant to have joined the Leighs & gone down to Blackwall in a steamer altogether, but they did not arrive in time, so we went without them, in a horrid steamer full of dirty looking people. We reached Blackwall at two just in time to see the first boatfuls going to the Yacht in a boat, & we waved handkerchiefs to make ourselves known. The boat came to fetch us as soon as it had put them all on board & the Leighs arrived in the next steamboat. We were a party of about 30. It was a most lovely hot day & most enjoyable. We had a fair wind & sailed down the river as far as Greenhithe, where we waited a little while to watch the racing yachts come up the river, for it was a regatta day. It was a very pretty sight to see them come in to the winning posts. We had dinner in two parties & luxuriated in tea & coffee in the open air. We reached Blackwall again about 8 oclock & we left the yacht immediately as we saw a steamer just going to start, but when we got up to it we found there were some drunken men on board fighting & it was too crowded to get out of their way, much less to sit down, so we would not go but came home by railroad with the rest of the party. We were divided among the Fremantles & the Glyns carriages as far as Hungerford market, where we found poor coachman had been waiting 3 hours for us, 2 after searching a little for Joseph & going sixpenses to strange little boys who were "most to" sharp, we came home in our own carriage, bringing Sir Thomas home.

London   1848, July 12

Nous sommes engagées cinq fois aujourd'hui. First of all we started at 1/2 past 12 for the Chiswick Flower Show. It seemed a very good one, but it was much too hot & crowded to attempt to get up to the flowers except very occasionally. It was the day the Duke of Devonshire opens his grounds to the public & we went there, but I had no idea what a long hot walk it is to get there. We left Chiswick about 4 o'clock & dropping Lucy & Miss Baker at home. Papa, Mary & I went on to Sir Robert Peel's where there was a day party to see the pictures. The heat & walk had tired us a good deal, but it was not a thing to miss so we went there. In the evening Lucy & Mary went to a royalty party at Lady Combermere's, & Lady East called for me & took me to Lord Leigh's where there was a small after dinner party, with M. Ruhe to play & Mme Sabatier (a pretty little French woman) to sing. I liked it very much & felt thoroughly independent.

London   1848, July 13

Papa, Mary & Lucy went to another breakfast at Campden Hill, & they took Georgey with them as the Newports are out of town. In the evening Papa, M. & I went to a little party at Mrs. Chandos Pole's, there Miss C. Pole, Mrs. Yarde Buller & Miss Acton gave us some very pretty singing.

London   1848, July 14

Did a great deal of business in the paying bill line. Papa, Lucy & I went to Mrs. Richard Cavendish's concert, a very good one & Alboni & Mario in particularly good voice. The Duke of Cambridge was there.

London   1848, July 15

Lady Lawley sent us 3 tickets for the Opera, so Papa, Mary & I went. It was the Covent Garden Opera & Gresi Alboni Mario &c. in La Donna del Lago. It is a finer opera than I thought it was (for I had never heard it before) & Mario's singing much too heavenly, & he looks particularly handsome & gentlemanlike in the Knight of Snowdon's dress. There was a very little bit of ballet, nothing particular. Augusta Leigh was there also.

London   1848, July 16

Sunday - The Windsor expedition took place today, but I was not of it. Mary & Lucy went with the Newports immediately after morning service. They spent the afternoon there with the Paulett Somersets, going to afternoon service at St. George Chapel & walking on the Terrace. They dined with the Somersets & came home very late.

London   1848, July 17

We went to Thalberg's morning concert at the concert of the Opera House. We had tickets for our box so we offered the spare one to Miss Cotton who went with us. Jenny Lind sang some of her Swedish songs, La Legione di Canto with Lablache, & Ahi che al suon del rio che frange from Der Freyschutz. It was heavenly. I wish prejudices would not stand so much in the way of our ever hearing her at the Opera. Gardoni, Coletti, Beletti & Lablache were the other performers, & Thalberg himself played 4 pieces of music as beautifully as usual. It was over 1/2 an hour sooner than we were told it would be, so we had to wait all that time, for our carriage. The only comfort was that every lady was in the same predicament. In the evening Lucy & Mary went with Papa to Lady Boroughs little party, & to Lady Kinnoull's ball, but did not stay late as they could not dance.

London   1848, July 18

Lucy & I & Papa went to a little party at Mrs. Seymour's, where there was a little dancing.

London   1848, July 19

Papa, Lucy & Mary left town for a few days on a visit to Audley End for a cricket match. I went with Newport to the Baths & Washhouses' breakfast at Fulham for which Mr. Webster lent his beautiful villa, Grisi, Alboni, Mario, Boyer &c. offered to sing, & Houdin to play his conjuring tricks. There were some fancy quadrilles danced (one had all the ladies in gypsey hats). The Queen, Prince Albert, the Prince of Wales, the Princess Royal & Princess Alice & no end of Royalty besides were there. It would have been a most delightful f?ɬte if it had been a fine day, but though it did not actually rain, it was very cloudy, sunless & windy & very cold. Newport gave me over to Miss Elphinstone to take care of, when he got tired of me. We came away soon after the Queen went & walked about a mile to our carriage. I dined with the Newports. The Orlando Foresters are with them.

London   1848, July 20

I went with Selina & Georgey to Campden Hill. Hardly had we got there before a heavy shower of rain with thunder came on which kept every body in the house or verandah & so wetted the ground that it was impossible to walk at all about the garden. We came away soon after six. I dined with the Newports & went afterwards with Selina to a party at the Duchess of Norfolk's which was very formidable & hot, but for a quiet party it was a very nice one, & the house quite beautiful. We did not stay late & brought Mrs. Anson home.

London   1848, July 21

Drove with the children. Left Miss Baker at Miss Lee's & had tea by myself alone in my glory. About 11 o'clock I went to fetch Selina who was dining at Mrs. Anson's, & we went to a dance at Lady Rokeby's. Came home about 1/2 past 1. Liked it. Selina a good chaperon at a ball.

London   1848, July 22

I went with Selina to Thorburn's at 11 o'clock to take her last sitting of him. It is very like & a beautiful thing. Papa & my sisters came back from Audley End.

London   1848, July 23

Sunday - In the afternoon Papa, Mary & I walked to West- minster, sent in our card to Dr. Buckland who was at luncheon, & he had us put into good seats in the Abbey for the service; even came home through the Horse Guards & the Mall.

London   1848, July 25

We left London for good & went to Weston, which we reached about 1/2 past 6 & we went to the Rectory before dinner to ask after Mr. Feilden who has been ill. He is not very well yet.

London   1848, July 26

It poured with rain all day & we did not go out. Sorted bows & arrows to take to Castle Bromwich.

Castle Bromwich   1848, July 27

Fortunately a fine morning, so we could see a little of the place. We left after luncheon for Castle Bromwich posting(?).

Castle Bromwich   1848, July 29

Henry & Frederic Bridgeman came for a few days. They arrived before luncheon, which we had early & went afterwards to Meriden (all but Lucy) to take some arrows to Thompson to be mended. We looked into the Forester Hall to see how it looked without people.

Castle Bromwich   1848, July 30

Sunday - Alfred & Matthews Kempson read the lessons.

Castle Bromwich   1848, July 31

Dined in the hall, which we mean to do while we are here.