Beau Brummel

George “Beau” Brummell was the son of the private secretary of Lord North. He became a member of “Prinny’s” set as a teenager in 1794.  He was known for his elegant dress, exquisite manners, and clever conversation. Unlike most Brits of his day, he insisted on personal cleanliness, cleaning his teeth, shaving, and scrubbing in a bath daily. He dressed with simple elegance. He brought into style the elegant black suit which survives to the present as formal dress. 

Brummel remained a companion of Prince George until 1813 when they had a falling out at a masquerade ball in July 1813 at which the Prince Regent greeted some friends but then “cut” Brummell by snubbing him, staring him in the face but not speaking to him. This provoked Brummell to ask, “Alvanley, who’s your fat friend?”  Brummel had run up debts keeping up with those much richer than he.  When Brummel suffered a huge gambling loss in 1814, he fled  to Calais to  escape his creditors.  He died in a madhouse suffering from syphilis in March of 1840.

Tomorrow, The Clubs   Rita Bay


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