22 May 2015

Fanny Burney and George III in Weymouth, Dorset

As 'Keeper of the Queen's Robes', the author Fanny Burney visited Weymouth on George III's first visit in 1789, the year after his first (possible) attack of porphyria. A plaque at the side of this replica of his bathing machine records Burney's impressions of the royal visit here:

'His majesty is in delightful health, and much improved spirits. All agree he never looked better. The loyalty of this place is excessive; they have dressed out every street with labels of "God save the King"...[The sailors] never approach the house, nor see the king, or his shadow, without beginning to huzza, and going on to three cheers...Nor is this all. Think but of the surprise of His Majesty when, the first time of his bathing, he had no sooner popped his royal head under water than a band of music, concealed in a neighbouring machine, struck up "God save great George our King".'

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