The Mary Hamilton Papers : Letter from Lady Catherine Hamilton (née Barlow) to Mary Hamilton

Hamilton (née Barlow), Catherine, Lady

The Mary Hamilton Papers

<p style='text-align: justify;'>Letter from Lady Catherine Hamilton to Mary Hamilton. The letter is concerned with the Court of Naples, the death of the hereditary Prince and the Queen's political ambitions.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Hamilton and Sir William have been at their villa in Caserta since the 13 December, excepting for one night when they gave a dinner for 44 English who are in Naples. She notes that the English are not pleased that she and her husband are so far away from Naples 'though they have reason to be satisfied as they all come to dine with us every time they come to Caserta'.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Hamilton writes of Sir William often going shooting with the King at times as much as four times a week and that Sir William often returns with the King to the Palace whilst the French and Spanish ministers usually go only once a week, usually together 'as if to keep one another in Continence'. She writes that it is her belief that 'this is the most extraordinary Court in Europe'. Hamilton lists the various positions and numbers at Court and writes on Court etiquette.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Hamilton also writes on the Queen's political ambitions and she believes that she wants the 'Reins of Government' in her own hands. The King, she notes is not used to 'any serious application [and] is glad when he is tired [...] with memorials & affairs of state to take up his Gloves & leave the [...] [business] to the queen who has sufficient but to make him think, that she is only the instrument of fulfilling the plans he has himself laid'.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Hamilton reports that Lady Maynard has returned to Naples for another attempt at being received into company which she describes in detail.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Dated at Caserta.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Original reference No. 11.</p>

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