Prince Regent Doesn’t Care About ‘His True Wife’ Anymore

‘The Carlton House fête marked the end of Mrs. Fitzherbert’s reign. While Charlotte played Cinderella at Windsor, with no Fairy Godmother to send her to the ball, Maria Fitzherbert tore up her invitation and remained at home. On receiving her card she had written to the Prince to ask at which table she was to sit. He replied that she might sit wherever she chose except at his table, where rank alone regulated the ceremonial. Maria replied hotly that their relationship entitled her to the first place at his table; but she did not press her claim: rather than see her successor, the handsome, elegant Lady Hertford, seated in a place of honour at the Prince’s table, she preferred to stay away. And so the woman whom he had once called ‘my only true and real wife’ withdrew herself from his life for ever.’

[an extract from ‘Prinny’s Daughter: A Biography of Princess Charlotte of Wales’ by Thea Home]

Mrs. Fitzherbert by Thomas Gaisborough

Picture: Mrs. Fitzherbert by Thomas Gaisborough, 1784, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, California, USA

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