Today’s blog is a little different to our usual but we could not allow the birth of George IV to pass without a little acknowledgement, especially as he was one of Grace Dalrymple Elliott’s lovers and allegedly father of her daughter, Georgiana Augusta Frederica Seymour, although Georgiana’s birth was not heralded in quite the same way as her alleged father’s entrance into the world. We thought we would celebrate his birth in the shape of portraits of him over the years, the majority being courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, as tempting as it would be simply to use the vast quantity of caricatures of him we’ve managed to resist temptation … well almost!
George’s birth was proclaimed in the London Evening Post (August 10, 1762 – August 12, 1762) :
At seven this morning her Majesty was safely delivered of a Prince at the palace of St James, to the great joy of his Majesty and of all his loyal subjects, who consider the birth of this heir to the crown as a pledge of the future felicity of their posterity under the happy auspice of his royal family.
About half an hour after nine this inestimable blessing was made known to the nation by the discharge of the tower guns and at noon there was a great court at St James’s, when the foreign ministers, the great officers of state and all the nobility and other persons of distinction were admitted to pay their compliments to the King upon this mark of the divine favour to his Majesty and to his people.
Her Majesty and the new-born Prince of Wales are in perfect health and nothing can surpass the testimonies of joy and affection expressed by all ranks and degrees of his Majesty’s subjects for this great and desirable event.
It is worth of observation that her Majesty is brought to bed of an heir to the crown on the same day that our most gracious Sovereign’s great grand-father, King George the first, succeeded to the crown of these Kingdoms, by virtue of several acts of parliament for securing the Protestant succession in the illustrious house of Hanover.
The first portrait we offer is that of George was a young child with his younger brother Frederick.
The next shows George in his teenage years whilst he was busy having fun with the ladies of the ton such as Grace Dalrymple Elliott, amongst others!! Grace looks more than 8 years older than him, doesn’t she?
Another Cosway portrait in 1792, aged 30
On the 8th April 1795 the Prince married Princess Caroline of Brunswick and somehow, despite unwillingness on his part, the couple managed to conceive a daughter who was born virtually nine months to the day after the couple were married – Princess Charlotte.
Well, we said we couldn’t resist a caricature image and this is our favourite, 1795 reflecting upon all his mistresses … is Grace amongst them? You decide!
Mary Robinson aka Perdita
Frances Villiers, Countess of Jersey
Anna Maria Crouch
Lady and Child – Grace Dalrymple Elliott, perhaps?