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Slight was the pain they gave, and short its date ;
The noble lord tried to divert his melancholy with building a villa near Margate, in a style equally expensive and fantastic, from which he made visits across the channel to France and Italy. He also endeavoured to get some comfort out of a few other worthless persons, such as George Selwyn and Lord March, afterwards “ Old Q.,” (Duke of Queensberry) gentlemen who, not being in want of places, had abided by him. But all would not do. He returned home and died at Holland House, twenty years younger than his father; and he was followed in less than a month by his wife. Gray's bitter lines on the house at Kingsgate are so well known, and the owner of it, upon the whole, was so goodnatured a man, probably sinning
no worse than the companions whose desertion he so lamented, that we are not sorry to omit them. It is said, that a day or two before his death, George Selwyn, who had a passion for seeing dead bodies, sent to ask how he was, and whether a visit would be welcome.
"Oh, by all means," said Lord Holland. “ If I am alive, I shall be delighted to see George ; and I know, that if I am dead, he will be delighted to see me.”
A curious story is told of the elopement of the Duke of Richmond's daughter, Lady Caroline Lenox, who thus speedily followed her husband to the grave. The Duke was a grandson of King Charles the Second; and both he and the Duchess had declined to favour the suit of Mr. Fox, the son of the equivocal Sir Stephen. They reckoned on her marrying another man ; and an evening was appointed on which the gentleman was
to be formally introduced as her suitor. Lady Caroline, whose affections the dashing statesman had secretly engaged, was at her wit's end to know how to baffle this interview. She had evaded the choice of the family as long as possible, but this appointment looked like a crisis. The gentleman is to come in the evening ; the lady is to prepare for his reception by a more than ordinary attention to her toilet. This gives her the cue to what is to be done. The more than ordinary attention is paid; but it is in a way that renders the interview impossible. She has cut off her eyebrows. How can she be seen by anybody in such a trim? The indignation of the Duke and Duchess is great ; but the thing is manifestly impossible. She is accordingly left to herself for the night; she has perfected her plan, in expectation of that result ; and the consequence is, that
10 THE FOX AND THE ROSE. when next her parents inquire for her, she has gone. Nobody can find her. She is off for Mr. Fox.
At the corner of Holland House Lane the one that is now shut up—is a public house, the Holland Arms, the sign of which is the family scutcheon. The supporters of the shield are a couple of foxes, and in this emblazonment of it—for the arms in the peerage have no such device-one of the foxes holds a rose in his mouth. The rose is the cognizance of the Richmond family. Was this an allusion to the stolen bud ?
The old Duchess of Marlborough, whose nephew had been persuaded by Henry, or, as he was familiarly termed, Harry Fox, to join him in politics, called him “ the fox that had stolen her goose.” Did this put it into Fox's head to represent himself as the fox that had stolen the rose ?
Lady Caroline appears to have been truly attached to her husband. Her death so soon after his own, was not improbably occasioned by it ; and when he procured her the title of Baroness, before he was ennobled himself, she put up their joint coat of arms in the house, where it is still be seen, with the motto Re e Marito (king and husband); as much as to say, that she derived her honours equally from both.
But the Fox family, during his lordship’s prosperity, had been forced to suffer what they considered a degradation, in turn. Among the pictures in Holland House we have mentioned an interesting one by Sir Joshua Reynolds, representing, in a group, Lady Sarah Lenox, who was a very young sister of Lady Caroline ; Lady Susan Fox, or Strangeways, an equally young daughter of Henry Fox's cousin, Lord Ilchester, who