A Visit to England | Marie Antoinette's Gossip Guide to the 18th Century: A Visit to England

July 12, 2010

A Visit to England

The princesse de Lamballe took a trip to England in the summer of 1787, in the wake of the revolution.  While there she spent time with Georgiana the Duchess of Devonshire, the Prince of Wales and Mrs. Fitzherbert. 

In Slough she was able to see the telescope designed by William Herschel.  She visited Bath, and tasted its warm healing waters.  At Richmond she supped with the Duke of Queensberry.  She also visited Brighton to enjoy the sea.  Her arrival created a stir, and did not escape the tabloids. 

She dined with England's bon ton, travelled with them and attended their parties. She was certainly more warmly welcomed than the duchesse de Polignac, as seen by this article:

"July 21st:
The Princesse de Lamballe with her suite accompanied by the Duchess of Devonshire, Lady Duncannon, and other ladies of distinction, conducted by his Grace the Duke of Richmond, the principal officers of the Artillery and others of high rank, and attended by Sir Peter Burrell and other gentlemen of fortune known to her Highness abroad visited the Royal Academy at Woolwich and was present at a field day of the Royal Artillery After seeing manoeuvres with guns small aims mortars &c., they visited the Prince, 90 guns, a new man of war, just completed and ready to launch. Her Highness expressed the utmost admiration at everything shown her on that magnificent ship."
Gentleman's Magazine

Surely the duchess de Polignac would have expressed the utmost boredom at being shown a war ship! 


  1. I knew there was a reason that I always liked the Princess de Lamballe far more the La Polignac!

  2. What a pretty lady! Very French! I love the purple.
    No wonder why she was so welcomed to England; she was friends with Georgiana who everyone loved.

    @Dreamstress, I like her much better too!

  3. I would totally rock a dress like that :)

  4. Now if only she had stayed in England and avoided such a gruesome end! :(

  5. I live just down the road from Bath and often visit the house on the Royal Crescent where the Princesse de Lamballe is said to have stayed during her visit. It's very lovely! I keep meaning to make a post about it on my blog actually as I have loads of photos so should get on with that! :)

  6. @The Dreamstress: mhmmm :o)

    @The Duchess: Wasn't she lovely! I have always thought so too! And I am also loving the purple!

    @Meghann Little Studio I feel the same way :) LOVE IT

    @Allie: Imagine how that would have changed things for her! But surely she never would have...

    @madameguillotine oh! Will you let me know when your post goes up?? Take lots of pictures!

  7. Marchioness de VogueJuly 15, 2010 at 2:44 AM

    Everytime i read narratives from people who survived the Reign of Terror I wish Vesuvius could've erupted over that whole country.

  8. I was just thinking how I would have rocked that hair. I had really long hair back in the day--could have done one of those do's with the ships in it! And that dress. Well, let's just say it could easily hide any serious hippage that might ensue from this food blogging!