Fan-crazy. There can be no other terminology to describe my feelings for Georgianna, the Duchess of Devonshire. I became obsessed with her after reading (and am still reading) her biography by Amanda Foreman.
I’ve become so fond of her that I searched everywhere for the book she wrote herself. There was none in the library, but I found through the internet that there was one in stock at Indigo, so I went there and spent $24 to buy it.
Oh boy, I could go on praising this book, but I’ll do so after I finish. I’m on page 136 right now and so have about 300+ pages left. So I guess it’s a bit too early to give you guys my final consensus. But so far, sooooo good. My understanding of the ton has changed forever after reading it.
Anyway, back to the biography. Through her fluid writing based on her meticulous research, Foreman recreates the upper-class London society of the 18th century: “The ton, by definition, inhabited the realm of extreme. Moderation was not a part of its world: elegence bowed to artifice, pleasure gave way to excess.” I am left breathless each time I open this book. I am thrown into the haut-ton which I both despise and am bewitched by. I can scarcely breathe, fearing for Georgie, and what blunder she might next make…Her amounting debts leaves me ill at ease. And sometimes it’s hard to imagine that such a woman had existed. Her life seems almost fictitious in that it seems…too big for life itself.
And of course, I haven’t gotten over my “fancy” for Harriette Wilson, the famous courtesan of the Regency Era. Who wouldn’t admire a woman with so much wit as to say: “If, thought I, this man is not to be entirely mine, perhaps I shall not be entirely his.”