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1818.] Memoir of her Majesty Queen Charlotte.
441 King declared his resolution to an ex- in his arms, gave her a salute, and led traordinary council, by whom the same her up the steps into the palace, where was published in a Gazette the same she received the congratulations of the evening. Shortly afterwards Lord Har- Princess-dowager and all the royal family. court was sent over by the way of Har- At nine the same evening the marriage wich to espouse the Princess, while Lord ceremony was performed in the great Anson, with the royal yacht and a squa- council-chamber, by the Archbishop of dron, hastened to Cuxhaven to convey Canterbury, the Duke of Cumberland, the royal bride to England.
his Majesty's uncle, giving away the While Lord Harcourt was on his bride. The coronation, which took route the Duchess-Dowager of Mecklen- place on the 22d, was more splendid than burg died, which retarded the ceremo- had hitherto been witnessed in England. nial for some days; but on the 15th of Such was the eagerness of public cuAugust the marriage contract was duly riosity to witness this interesting spécsigned, and two days afterwards her Se- tacle, that people of all ranks poured rene Highness, accompanied by the reign- into the metropolis from every part of ing Duke, her youngest brother, and the British islands. Temporary crecsister, left Strelitz, amidst the tears and tions were placed along the line of problessings of the people, who erected a cession, capable of holding many hun. triumphal arch on the occasion. At dreds of spectators, some of whom paid Mirow the sisters parted; and the ten guineas for a single sitting. In the scene was described by those who saw houses the prices were equally exorbiit as remarkably affecting. After rest- tant; and one gentleman gave no less ing two days at the electoral seat of than one hundred and forty guineas for Ghorde, the bride elect entered Stade on the use of a front room to accommodate the 22d, and remained there till the 24th, his family. when she proceeded down the Elbe, On the ninth of November their Maand embarked on board the Royal Char- jesties visited the Lord Mayor, Sir Salotte yacht, where she was received by muel Fludyer, at Guildhall; and preAdmiral Lord Anson, and the Duchesses vious to the arrival of the procession of Ancaster' and Hamilton, who at- from Westminster, they and their suite tempting to kneel, she raised them remained at the house of Mr. David up and saluted them most affectionately, Barclay, opposite Bow church. As that saying, she hoped “ friendship would family was of the society of Quakers, take place of ceremony." On the 28th their Majesties dispensed with all the the squadron left the Elbe; and after a formality of a court, and received those tempestuous voyage of ten days, during who were introduced to them truly as which the Princess was not sick more friends, without the ceremony of kneelthan half an hour, the royal yacht en- ing. Nothing, indeed, could be more tered Harwich road, September the 6th ; engaging than their entire behaviour on but as no preparations had been made that day; and every person was charmed there for her reception, she remained on with the condescending manners and board till the next day, when she set foot cheerfulness of the Queen. on English ground in the presence of thou- In the same month Parliament settled sands of spectators, who hailed her ar- upon her Majesty the same dowry as rival with loud acclamations. Having had been granted to the late Queenrested a little, and received the compli- namely, one hundred thousand a year, ments of the corporation, she proceeded with Richmond Park and Somerset on her journey through Colchester to House, though it is remarkable enough Witham, the seat of Lord Abercorn, that neither lived to enjoy the legislative where she was elegantly entertained and provision. The same year, indeed, his slept that night. At noon on the fol- Majesty purchased of Sir Charles Sheflowing day she came to Rumford, where field, the house in St. James's park, the King's coach and other carriages which had been built by his father, the were in waiting. Having taken some late Duke of Buckingham; and this refreshment, she entered the coach with mansion was afterwards settled upon the the two Duchesses, and about five Queen, in exchange for her claims to o'clock came to St. James's, where she Somerset House. On the 12th of Aúwas handed out at the garden gate gust the following year, the heir-appaby the Duke of York, who led her to rent of these realms was born-an event his brother, then in the garden. On ap- that diffused universal joy throungout the proaching his Majesty she was about to nation, and was rendered remarkable by make bier obeisance, when he caught her its happening on the very day when the New MONTHLY MAG.--No. 59.
Memoir of her Majesty Queen Charlotle. [Dec.1, House of Brunswick ascended the Bri- with a ball, for the Queen was at this tish throne.
time extremely fond of dancing. Thus Great expectations had been formed glided away the early years of the royal among the nobility of seeing under the couple, full of harmony, but not without new reigo a lively court, full of gaiety trouble; for the King lost two brothers and splendour ; but though her Majesty and a sister in the prime of life, by conpartook of the public diversions, and ap- sumption and fever; the severest trial of peared gratified with the pleasure which all
, however, was the melancholy fate of her presence afforded, she delighted more his sister Caroline Matilda,who, in an evil in the tranquil enjoyment of domestic hour, had been espoused, for political consociety. She went through however the siderations, to the imbecile Christian, formal ceremonies of the court days with the seventh King of Denmark. A revolublended dignity and sweetness, softening tion ensued in that country, through the sense of her high station by the most the wickedness of the Queen-mother; condescending gracefulness of manner, and the unhappy Matilda would have and pleasantness of conversation, and been a victim to her ambitious revenge, though every one ailmitted to her if she had not been rescued by the spirit presence felt the impression made by of her brother. the appearance of royalty, none departed We have alluded to this tragic story, without being charmed with an admira. by way of shewing the contrast which tion of her goodness.
appeared in our own country at this Their Majesties for many years after time; where, though faction raged futheir marriage resided chiefly at Kew, riously against the King, not a reproachthe gardens of which palace were greatly ful word was uttered to the disparageimproved under the personal direction of ment of the Queen, who, by steering the Queen, who had a fine taste for clear of all parties, and preserving a botany, and natural history in general. steady deportment in private life, secured In this delightful spot, which was en. universal esteem and admiration. The larged by enclosing Kew lane and taking King cherished for her the fondest afin Richmond garden, were collected nu- feetion, and his mother placed in her uninerous exotics from all parts of the bounded confidence. A numerous faglobe ; from the newly-found isles of the mily blessed the nuptial bed, and cementSouthern Ocean, to Japan, from thence ed the ties of love. The virtues of the to the western skirts of America, and to Queen expanded with her cares; and in the very icy plants of Greenland. Here maternal attention, as well as in conjugal the Queen had a cottage erected from a attachinent, she shone a bright example design of her own, which she furnished in an evil age. Her children were not in a style of simplicity, and adorned it left solely to attendants and tutors. She with the best English 'prints that were had them continually under her own inthen published.
spection; and even in the hours of reThe hours of the Queen were econo- laxation from study, they were hardly mized with the greatest regularity ; the ever out of her sight. She was their forenoon was devoted to reading with first instructor; nor when they were adDr. Majendie, who was her instructor vancing in their studies, under their rein the English tongue; and in this emn- spective teachers did the Queen neglect ployment his Majesty cheerfully assisted; to examine into their progress in learnBo that in a short time the royal pupil ing, or intermit her own prelections, was not only enabled to discourse fluent- whenever she found an opportunity and ly, but to write the language correctly, occasion for them. and even with elegance. Some of her The first and greatest trial which her compositions, both in prose and verse, we Majesty was called to endure, after her have reason to believe have appeared settlement in this country, was in the anonymously in print; and others, it is year 1788, when the functions of governhoped,will be communicated to the public. ment became suspended by the mental In the morning after studving and work- malady that afflicted her royal consort. ing at her needle, her Majesty general- Never, perhaps, was there a more criti ly accompanied the King in a ride, or in cal period; for the event being without walking round the gardens, till dinner; an example, no legislative provisions after which, if there was no company, the could be found for the exigency of the Queen played on the harpsichord, to In this anomalous state of things, wliich, also, she sang in a very agreeable party, as usual, became not only active, and scientific manner. In the evening but furious. A new principle was set there was commonly a select party at up, and the inherent right of the Prince cards; though frequently the night closed to take upon himself the exercise of the
1818.) Momoir of her Majesty Queen Charlotte.
443 regal power, was zealously maintained that she had a public duty to discharge, by the very men who had uniformly re- it was her constant care to discountesisted all claims on the part of the crown, nance every deviation from virtuous prothat did not emanate from Parliament. priety in others. Hence no female, once The struggle was singular and violent; marked as having o'erstepped the limit of for it exhibited the ministers with the chastity, could ever obtain admission to Queen on the side of the people ;~ and the Queen's presence; -- of which a the constitutional Whigs, as they called notable instance occurred in the dignithen iselves, contending for the jus divi- fied rebuke given to a Countess who renum of the heir-apparent.
quested that her sister, after having The part taken by her Majesty in this been divorced, might be allowed to come conflict was imposed upon her by the to the drawing-room. To this her Manecessity of the circumstances in which jesty made no reply. The application, she was placed ; and had she acted any however, was renewed and evaded; but otherwise than she did, her name would the Countess, unappalled, said at last, not have passed down in history without May I be permitted to know what anreflections on the versatility of the hu- swer I shall return to the solicitation I man mind. Time has set an immutable have repeatedly preferred to your Mastamp upon her conduct; and though jesty ?" Say," replied the Queen, the servile worshipping of the rising sun “ that you did not dare to ask me such endeavoured to justify their own incon a favour." sistency and apostacy at her expense, we To the education of the Princess Char. know that the principle on which she pro- lotte her Majesty paid unremitted atceeded has long since been regarded with tention; and it was at her request that admiration in that very quarter where Mrs. Hannah More drew up that most faction essayed to create mistrust and excellent book of systematic instruction, pei petuate coldness.
entituled, “ Hints for the Education of a T'he recovery of his Majesty diffused young Princess." Thus much, also, we joy throughout the British empire; and can peremptorily assert, that the graces while the Queen participated in the uni- and qualifications which rendered the versal feeling, she had the exquisite plea- loss of this blooming hope of the nation sure to find that the course adopted by so keenly and generally felt, were princiher, under the severe visitation which pally the effect of her Majesty's sedulous tried her fortitude, was acknowledged and parental care. with gratitude by the voice of the peo The latter years of the Queen afforded ple. Subsequently to this important a striking proof of the instability of subcrisis, the lifo of the Queen moved on in lunary happiness. After losing a bean unvaried current, marked by no parti- loved daughter in the prime of life, she cular incidents to excite public attention, saw, with painful apprehension, the detill the marriage of the Prince of Wales cay of her august partner's mental with his cousin, Caroline of Brunswick; powers, as well as of his visual faculties. and the consequent birth of the Princess The latter, indeed, might have been Charlotte produced a beam of joy which easily borne with ; but the cclipse of that soon disappeared. Into the causes of understanding'which had afforded a daily the mysterious extinguishment of nå- interchange of sentiment for so long a tional hope we shall not presuine to enter; period, must have been distressing benor even were we sufliciently qualified to yond measure, because it was a pridevelope the secret of that fatal separa- vation of a blessing that, in the nation, would the sense of duty permit us ture of things, could neither be reto gratify needless curiosity. Suffice it stored nor supplied. The principles of reto say, that, in spite of all surmises and ligion alone could have supported the evil reports, the conduct of the Queen Queen under these heavy trials that was no other than that which became were aggravated by other circumstances, her relative situation, both as a wife and of which the world had no knowledge. a mother. During the long space of When the Regency Act passed, inthirty-five years that she had resided in deed, she had a satisfaction in finding this country, the slightest wbisper was that it produced no difference between never breathed to the disadvantage of her her and the Prince, who, having emancharacter, but
cipated himself from the cntanglements chaste as the icicle of party, was enabled to follow the bent That's curdled by the frost from purest snow of his own generous inclination. Her And hangs on Dian's temple,
Majesty, however, saw with pain the she preserved her own reputation free stirrings of faction to disturb the governfrom suspicion, and therefore, sensiblement of her son, resembling very much
Memoir of her Majesty Queen Charlotte. [Dec. 1, those which she had witnessed, with which she was received in her transit fear and trembling, when he was yet through the city, on a visit to the Lord but an infant. At that turbulent period Mayor, with a view to patronize the she was in the full enjoyment of popu- national schools of the metropolis. It larity; while her august consort was appears that her Majesty went to the daily exposed, together with his excel- Mansion House in what is termed half lent parent, to the insults of an infu- state ; and though her visit was antiriated multitude, set on for the worst of cipated, no preparations were made for purposes, by wretches of the most pro- her reception on her entering the city fligate character, who called themselves --none of the officers of the Lord patriots. Now, in the decline of life, Mayor were in readiness to escort her ; bereft of a husband, of whom it miglit be and in consequence, the high constable said that he was as one dead among the of Westminster, who preceded the royal living, the Queen could not fail to be carriage on horseback, contrary to all shocked by the ungrateful language of a precedent and etiquette, was confickle-minded people. She, in her turn, strained to continue his attendance till was now become an object of persecu- her Majesty alighted at the Lord Mayor's tion to a licentious press, designing ile- private door. Even here there was magogues, and an unruly multitude. none of that attention which the ap
The affectionate attentions of the proach of such an illustrious visitor Prince, and the dutiful conduct of her demanded. As her Majesty passed other children, were, it is true, con- through the Poultry, she was surrounded soling amidst these sore visitations; by a crowd, who were guilty of acts of but they could not altogether heal the rudeness of the most terrific description. wound that had been inflicted. At To prevent these indignities, there was length, it was too manifest to the medi- not a city officer present. It is uncal attendants most in confidence with necessary to remark, when the weak her Majesty, that an incipient hepatic state of her Majesty's frame at that time complaint had commenced. The symp- is considered, that such a scene was caltoms increased, and she went to Bath, culated to produce the most serious conthat last resource for bilious disorders, sequences. Her Majesty was very much as they are called ; and while there the alarmed, and on quitting her carriage, deadly blow was given in the sudden tid was observed to tremble exceedingly; ings of the death of the Princess Charlotte and although she exerted the energies and her infant. The Queen's feelings were of her mind to overcome her fright, she agitated beyond conception; and the was yet greatly affected. Whether this more so, because from her own expe- want of respect arose from any private rience, and the youth of her grand-daugh- direction of the Queen we are not awarc; ter, no such result could have been dread- but to what happened in the morned. The Queen hastened to Windsor; ing has been attributed the indisbut after some time she was obliged to position by which she was assailed in the return to Bath,where she seemed to enjoy evening. Her Majesty, after a partial a little relief from the medicinal springs; recovery from this attack, experienced a and she came back rather enlivened in relapse on the 7th, and again on the 18th spirits, than benefited by the waters. It of July. At this time she resided at her was not long however before the disorder palace at Buckingham-gate: but the phybegan to wear all the formidable aspect of sicians, conceiving that a change of air the hydrops pectoris, which indicated would produce some benefit to their a general breaking up of the system. Royal patient, advised her removal. She
The first attack of the disease, was on was accordingly taken to Kew Palace in a journey to Windsor, when the con an easy carriage, accompanied by the vulsions were so severe, that it was Princess Augusta aud the Duchess of deemed unsafe for the Royal party to Gloucester. Here she remained till her proceed further than Kew. From this, death. Her Majesty had expressed an however, she gradually recovered, and ardent wish to be at Windsor, which hopes were entertained that it would be was but.natural, when her attachment overcome. The next attack was at the for her afflicted consort is considered ; Duke and Duchess of York's entertain- and we are persuaded, that her prinment, given in June last ; and her cipal motive for desiring to go thither Majesty from that period was unable to was to spend the remainder of her days walk. The immediate cause of this, under the same roof with him. is ascribed to the agitation arising in her During her Majesty's melancholy vaMajesty's mind, from the manner in cillation between life and death, numerous