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Posts Tagged ‘General Charles Richard Fox’

Regency Personalities Series

In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.

Lady Mary Fox
19 December 1798 – 13 July 1864

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Mary Fox

Lady Mary Fox was born in Bushy House as the fourth child and second daughter of the then Prince William, Duke of Clarence, and his companion Dorothea Jordan. She was “a fine looking, brown girl with a pleasant countenance and manners”. In 1820, her younger sister Elizabeth was courted by Charles Richard Fox, the eldest but illegitimate son of Lord and Lady Holland. His parents did not consent to the match, but four years later approved of his relationship with Mary.

The couple married on 19 June 1824 in St George’s, Hanover Square, London. Lady Holland worried that she might be “a sickly subject” and wished that the “roturier blood of the mother might have mitigated the royal constitutions”. Her mother-in-law wrote on 31 August that her son, “though fond of her, he only considers her as an auxiliary to his medals and other possessions, not as a principal”, but concluded that “it will all do well; as she is very winning, and very firm, and sincerely fond of him.” The pair established their household in Little Holland House by 1827. They moved to Canada in September 1829 when Charles resumed active army service.

Mary Fox received from her father the second part of the Anthony Roll, which had been in the possession of the royal family since the reign of King Henry VIII of England, though she was probably not interested in the history of the Royal Navy. The death of her uncle, King George IV, in 1830 led to her father’s accession to the thrones of the United Kingdom and Hanover. The new king was anxious to see his daughter return home and had her husband transferred. He granted her the rank of a marquess’ daughter on 24 May 1831.

King William IV died in January 1837 and Lady Mary’s cousin, Princess Alexandrina Victoria, ascended the throne. Later that year, Lady Mary published a utopian feminist Gothic fiction narrative titled An Account of an Expedition to the Interior of New Holland. Lady Mary’s treatise is the most representative example of the portrayal of New Holland (Australia) as a mysterious and “unreal” place. In January 1857, Sir Frederic Madden, custodian of the manuscripts at the British Museum, learned that Lady Mary wished to sell the roll she was given by her father in order to raise funds for building a church “or something of that kind”.

For a large part of her later life, Lady Mary served as housekeeper at Windsor Castle. She died childless on 13 July 1864. She is buried with her husband at Kensal Green Cemetery.

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Regency Personalities Series
In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.

General Charles Richard Fox
6 November 1796 – 13 April 1873

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Charles Richard Fox

General Charles Richard Fox was born at Brompton, the illegitimate son of Henry Richard Vassall-Fox, 3rd Baron Holland, through a liaison with Lady Webster, whom Lord Holland would later marry.

After some service in the Royal Navy, Fox entered the Grenadiers, and was known in later life as a collector of Greek coins. His collection was bought for the royal museum of Berlin when he died in 1873. He married in St. George’s, Hanover Square, London, on 19 June 1824 Lady Mary FitzClarence, a daughter of William IV by his mistress Dorothea Jordan. The couple had no issue.

Fox was a politician. He represented the Whig interest and sat for Calne 1831-32, then Tavistock 1832-35. He briefly represented Stroud in 1835, but resigned that seat so Lord John Russell could contest it. He was elected as a Member of Parliament for the east London constituency of Tower Hamlets in 1841 and served until 1847.

Fox was Surveyor-General of the Ordnance in 1841 and 1846-52. He was promoted Major-General on 9 November 1846, Lieutenant-General on 20 June 1854, and General on 6 March 1863.

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