—Referring to the wedding ring of the Princess Louise of Wales, a correspondent of a Home paper writes :— " At the marriage of Queen Victoria, rings were distributed having the Royal likeness in profile of gold, the legend being ' Victoria Rcgina.' The whole was less than a quarter of an inch in diameter, but with the aid of a powerful magnifying-glass the features were disclosed, beautifully delineated. The Queen was so pleased with this microscopic work of art that she ordered six dozen impressions to be struck and set by the Court jewellers in gold rings for distribution among distinguished personages. Maria Marchioness of Ailesbury has, if I mistake not, one of these souvenirs."
—Ellen Terry, Mary Anderson, and Mrs Langtry are all three, it is said, equally extravagant in the price they pay for their gowns. The stuff may cost from £1 to.£lo a yard if: only it is prettier than any other. Of the two principal dresses worn by Mrs Langtry as Esther Sandraz, one is a pompadour gown of turquoise-blue silk and satin, trimmed, almost strewn, with pale pink roses. The front of the low bodice is composed of graduated bows oE pink ribbon, and the sleeves are finished with ruffles of old lace. The other, shepherdess costume, is of yellow brocade and white China crepe, ornamented with trails of yellow roses, bunches of coloured lilac, and loops of mauve ribbon. The large leghorn hat and the silver mounted crook are similarly adorned. Mrs Langtry cares nothing for jewellery.
— Mrs Harrison recently remarked that if a woman loves the society of her husband she should never encourage him to become a public man.
—Says the Atchison Globe :— " When it is remembered that the girl who cares for her looks takes a bath every night before going to bed, washes her teeth, brushes her back hair for 15 minutes, braids it in a long braid, puts up a dozen front and back frizzes, puts ccld cream on her face, glycerine and old gloves en her hands, ammonia on her chigger bites, and says her prayers, the wonder grows that girls ever go to bed at all."
—Mrs Gladstone, before starting for the Continent in September, found time to visit the scene of the strike in the East India dock-road. She explored with great interest the soup kitchen, where GOO families were fed daily, and after leaving a cheque from herself and the Rev. Harry Drew, vicar of Hawardcn, for the relief of the strikers, Mrs Gladstone drove westward again amidst loud cheering. —Prince Albert Victor led his men with an aplomb that excited warm applause. He has evidently succeeded in gaining the hearty good will of the soldiers under his command, and it is impossible not to admire the admirable tact he manifests in his intercourse with his brother officers, allowing, as he does, no difference to be made between himself and them. He saunters into shops and make his little purchases just as the humblest of subalterns, or rather in a much more lowly manner, for whereas they have been known to give themselves airs and request a packet of envelopes to be sent to the barracks, Prince Albert Victor never has; but, on the contrary, carries his parcels home in his pocket. As yet the female fishing mania has not " caught on " in England, and it is probably too late this season for it to do so. But next year there is little doubt that the dressmakers will have a gay time in assisting the development of an amusement which, first in France and then in America, has become quite the rage. It is not likely, indeed, that young ladies will be seized with a burnng desire to excel in fly-fishing, or that they will learn to successfully manipulate a sealine. The mania is a much simpler affair. Order your dressmaker to provide you with a fetching fishing costume, which should come slightly below the knees, then shoeless and stockingless, stand ankle deep in the sea, with a long-handled not to catch your imaginary prey ; carry a creel on your shoulders, and wear a jaunty fishing cap on your head e'est unfait accompli. Materials are already being turned out by the manufacturers of of sea-weedy and sea-shell patterns for use on the European side of the Atlantic, and milliners are prepared to follow in their footsteps aa soon as the demand is sufficient. — According to an old traveller, one of the first things one notices in the crowd of passengers recently quitting American shores is the sensible and appropriate costumes in which they array themselves. The reprdach of the American woman — that she wears costly and heavy jewels at all times and seasons—is taken away from her. Her charming sea-costume bears the marks of artist's brains and finders, but is simplicity itself. A steelblue serge, perhaps trimmed with white braid, a little straw-bonnet and blue veil, a tiny scarf-pin at the throat, no ear-rings, no
brooch, and only keepsaks rings on her fingers. Men wear rough tweed suits, as coarse as hQrse blankets, straw hats, and carry striped silk umbrellas. They eschew ornament — scarf-pin, rings, and even watch chain being now forbidden. The watch is either dropped into the pocket without a guard or a steel one is worn concealed under the waistcoat.
—"A Lady's Maid" writes in an English paper :— '• I hope you will pardon this letter, but reading the Hon. Mrs B 's article on tight lacing, I thought one from a lady's maid might interest you, as we see a great deal of this sort of thing. J am living with a young married lady at present, who is most particular about her figure and appearance, and her husband is always talking to her about slim waists and lacing, as he admires it very much. She is tall, about sft. Bin, and well made, so you can imagine what a business it is pulling her in to 17in ; but she has a splendid figure when she is dressed. She always laced tight, but never below 19in till she married a year ago. Her husband then persuaded and bothered her into reducing her size. People little think of what pain she is suffering when they admire her trim waist and tapering figure ; but she is pretty, and has a very pale, good complexion, and white soft hands and pretty feet, so her female vanity supports her. At 9 o'clock I lace her, after her bath, and a housemaid helps me to squeeze her waist well in. As I tighten the lace she looks very white, and her lips often twitch as we pull her in. She never lunches, and does not walk very much. At night she wears a softer stay' with a 19in waist, as she says it is more painful to allow, her figure to expand completely, and then lace it up again, than to keep ib always about the same size."
— A Tobolsk journal describes the marriage ceremony between a former Russian officer, condemned to 10 years' hard labour in the mines and life-long banishment, and a young and beautiful girl, possessing an ample fortune in her own right, who had faithfully and wearily followed the footsteps of her lover. The bridegroom was brought to the alter of the prison chapel in the soiled grey clothes of a miner, his ankle 3 bound by chains riveted to the iron waistband. The marriage ceremony over, husband and' wife bade each other a sad but hopeful farewell ; he to return to bis gloomy, toilsome life, and she to wait wearily until her husband obtains the freedom of a colonist.
— There is a perfectly lovely story going the rounds in France. It seems that the black king of the Sedangs, who is now in Paris, having seen and admired a portrait of Madame Marie Rose, entered into negotiations with a matrimonial agency at Paris to ascertain whether the lady in question would consent to share his throne. The agency (the name of which is given), understanding that his Majesty would marry Marie Rose or no one else, immediately conceived the happy thought to manufacture a Marie Rose of his ; own, seeing that the original was already > provided with a " just cause or impediment " in the martial person of Colonel Henry Mapleson. The negotiations have proved successful, and Le Roi dcs Sedangs has married Marie Rose— that is to say, he has married someone very closely resembling her, at anyrate in name. Meanwhile, Colonel Henry Mapleson and his popular wife were placidly enjoying their holiday at Ghateanneur.
~- Miss Wilder, of Brooklyn.is about 26 years old, and has dark, Oriental-looking eyes and short, curly, dark hair. Her form is slender, but well knit, and she has been accustomed to help her father in the smithy in preference to doing household duties ever since she was a child. One secret of the attraction which the occupation has for her is her love for horses, the most restive brute submitting quietly to her control. Miss Wilder wears a short gown of dark serge about her work with a rather coquettishly shaped leather apron and two or three knots of scarlet ribbon. It is surprising what a number of horses at once seem to need shoeing when her figure is noticed against the light of the forge fires. She has become her father's partner rather than assistant, and says she means to continue in the business.
—Out of the 14 trunks Mrs Vanderbilt brought home with her from Paris comes every day or two something new and lovely to fill the hearts of other women with admiration and envy. At a ball at Newport she carried a fan which was greatly admired. It was a huge fan, by Louise Abbema, painted in pastels. It is the first time that this medium has ever been used for fan painting, because the coloured chalks of which the pastels are made would rub off with wear ; but Mdlle. Abbema has invented a fixatif which renders pastel pictures as imperishable as those in water or oils, and as a result, her pastel fans have had a great rage. The Duchesse d'Uzes has four of them and the Queen of Spain two. Mrs Vanderbilt's big fan is painted on one side to represent a blue night-sky. In one corner is the wide thin ring of the new moon and the blue is dotted with stars. Across the sky flits a great butterfly, with wings of silver gauze,on whose back lies a Japanese girl. Following is an innumerable train of butterflies, which melts away into a haze in the distance. On the other side, the fan is pale-apricot pink, the colour of the after-glow on a summer evening, and this is sprinked with silver stars. —The Governor's house at Melbourne is a stately pile, and it can boast of a ball-room a third more commodious than the Sovereign's at Buckingham Palace. This is often found too small for the large company invited, which usually numbers about 2000, whereas at the Queen's State ball less than 500 are usually invited. Lord Hopetoun will also find pleasant retirement at a country seat about 40 miles from Melbourne, easily reached by rail. —A recent number of " Woman's World " contains a very readable article on " Brides and Bridal Customs," by Janet Dee. " The Chinese bride," Miss Dee says, " wears the colour of the sun— bright yellow— in her gown, which is richly embroidered in various colours, over this an ample red veil ; and she is taken to her husband's house in a bright red Sedan chair, over which a red umbrella is carried, the bearers being lighted on their way by a multitude of flashing red lanterns, gay enough, even if we omit the crackers they let off and the tom-toms they beat. Yet black is considered an eminently suitable colour for the jobes of her bridesmaids/ — li all peers possessed as much sound
common sense as Lord Leigh we should hear less about the necessity of abolishing the Lords. The other day he declared, in answer to an appeal for a subscription towards founding a bishopric at Birmingham, that "in his opinion no more bishops were wanted, and that he did not intend to give a brass farthing to the fund. . He would rather give the poor parsons a little' instead." It will be remembered ,that a few years ago, when the agricultural distress was at its worst, Lord Leigh withdrew his subscription from the Worcestershire hounds, and refused to hunt, so that he might be able to make a larger remittance of rent to his farmers. Later, when the distress continued, he gave up his town-house and lived entirely on his estate, so that what money he must spend might go among his own people. — "Snapdragon" is the newest shade of purple, aud reminds one of black Hamburg grapes with the bloom on. All shades of red are still to be worn— staring red, subdued red, old brick red, and the red of a new " villa residence."
— One of the most interesting events of the Queen's recent visit to Wales was her meeting at Ruabon with an old friend, Mrs Yorke, of Erddig. This lady is a daughter of the late Sir Edmund Cu3t and a god-daughter of the Duchess of Kent, after whom she is named Victoria. She is one of the very few survivors of the Welsh gentry who welcomed her Majesty to Wales as Princess Victoria in 1832.
—Queen Christina of Spain is said to be an accomplished musician. Not only is she a good pianist and a clever violinist^ but she composes as well. A lullaby song of her composition, written for her son, is a success in Madrid, where it has secured the admira- , tion of Monarchists and Republicans alike. Her ambition is to popularise in Spain the music of the German composers, and to this end she has ordered that the Spanish military bands shall include classical* music among their selections.
—By all accounts the infant King of Spain must be a very jolly little fellow, and enjoys his life at St. Sebastian as he is never likely to do when he comes to the full knowledge of what it is to be sovereign of a realm, and to comprehend the cares of State. Every morning at 8 o'clock, when the band begins to play and the troops to parade in front of the palace, his small Majesty insists on rushing out into the balcony to hear them. Crowds collect to see this matutinal visit of the young monarch, and he not only thrums with his fingers on the balustrades in time to the music, but sails out to the officers or any other personages he happens to recognise in the throng below, always addressing them briefly by their Christian names, and dispensing with any titles. Thus General Cordoba, for whom he has a special liking, is always " Juanito ; " and the soldiers grin to hear their commanding officer thus greeted in a shrill, treble from the palace window. But he converses with the general crowd with equal affability. When he is told it is time to come in to breakfast he shouts to the crowd: "Good-byl Mamma want me (a manana — equivalent to the French au revoir) ! and trots indoors, followed by the delighted plaudits of the populace. . — Mrs Maybrick's two little children have been adopted by a well-to-do London couple, and will be educated and cared for as though they were their own children. As the children will be called by their foster-parents' surname it is hoped that they will never be recognised as the offspring of a murderess. At present they are ignorant of their mother's crime. Brierly.the lover of Mrs Maybrick, was a fellow passenger of a son of Oliver Wendell Holmes, and he stated to that gentleman that he expended £6000 in Mrs Maybrick's defence at her trial. —Great interest was felt in Paris in the members of the "Women Salvage Brigade," who accompanied the British firemen during their recent visit to Paris. The delegates whose visit created so' much stir were the Misses Mortimer, Nicholls, Bessell, Pritchard, and Jeffs. They were all London girls. To Miss Mortimer the honour was due of taking the first step. Mr Louis, late French Consul, suggested it to her. After a great fire he said to her that there was really no more danger in getting out of a high window than out of one on a first floor, if there were nerve and cool determination to hold on the rope or ladder. Miss Mortimer consequently tried. She made her first perilous descent from a fifth story at Coventry. All these girls began with perilous descents, and were nQt trained gradually to make their plunges down life-saving canvasses. One of them made a plunge from the top of a very high house, and was on her feefc and sa,f§ in a moment, so that she had not time to be scared at what she had done. They have learned to go up ropes and ladders as well as down. Their costume consists of red silk caps, dark-blue short skirts, not descending below the calf, soft leather boots, neat bodices, with .broad, tag^s buttons, and turned up with red at the neck and the cuffs. Madam Carnot invited them to Fountainebleau, and they were feted on all sides.
— The following anecdote illustrating the magnanimity and nobleness of heart of that unfortunate Emperor Maximilian may interest your readers. It is told by -Qctave Feuillet, who heard it from the Empress Eugenie's own lips, and it is known but to few. On her return from Mexico, the wife o£ General Miramon, who was shot at the same time and at the same place as the Emperor Maximilian, was sent for by the Empress Eugenic, and as Madame Miramon had accompanied her husband to the very place of executiou and seen him and Maximilian fall, she was in a position to furnish her Majesty with most touching details of the tragedy, and among others the following :— " Two bodies of Mexican soldiers had been ordered out for the execution ; the one composed of good marksmen and destined for the Emperor, the other made up of the most raw recruits, and therefore of very bad shots. When the Emperor and Miramon arrived on the ground, the commanding officer indicated to Maximilian the body of men chosen to shoot him. Maximilian turned to Miramon and said : ' I can only give you one proof now of my friendship. Put yourself there. I order you to 1 ' and forcing him to stand before the well-trained marksmen, the Emperor himself stood tip before the raw recruits. The result, of course, was that Miramon was shot dead at once, whereas poor Maximilian was simply massaored and suffered a long time,
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LADIES'. GOSSIP., Otago Witness, Issue 1971, 14 November 1889
LADIES'. GOSSIP. Otago Witness, Issue 1971, 14 November 1889
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