Splendour & Squalor: Marcus Scriven

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Edward FitzGerald, 7th Duke of Leinster

IT TOOK only two or three minutes for the ambulance to wail through the Monday afternoon traffic. A futile race: by the time it reached Horseferry Road and turned into Westminster Hospital, Mr FitzGerald was dead. His exit – angular bones splayed on a stretcher, a lock of lank white hair falling over his face – might have been suffered by any of London’s genteel poor…’

‘At home, he disturbed his family – assembling for breakfast on an austere winter morning – with the sound of repeated gunfire, which was seemingly coming from the rookery at the side of the house. ‘Everyone rushed out and saw Eddie, shooting into thin air. They said, “What the hell are you doing?” Eddie said, “I’m just keeping my hands warm”.’

‘…the trustees heard that his French mistress had given birth to his child at a racecourse in France; that he had formed an inappropriate attachment to a Gaiety Girl; that he spent money he didn’t have and drove – at manic speed – cars he couldn’t afford. He had bought fifteen monkeys, a score of snakes; he was living at the Buckingham Palace Hotel, then in a flat in Barons Court. He was leading a convoy of three Rolls Royces across England, en route for Scotland and Ireland, and had been obliged to resign his commission in the Irish Guards. Most of this was true…’

Victor Hervey
Angus Montagu
John Bristol

With thanks to www.thepeerage.com

© 2024 Marcus Scriven