Friday, April 29, 2011

Kate's Bouquet: Very Georgian

Lauren and I have been suffering from post-royal wedding fantasy-land mode, otherwise known as "princess land," a state of mind totally alien to us.  Please send us your Get Well Soon cards.

While many (myself included) will be talking about the dress for days I will take this time to point bring some attention to the simple and tasteful bouquet the bride carried.  According to the Official Royal Wedding the flowers in the bouquet all have symbolic meaning:
Lily-of-the-valley – Return of happiness
Sweet William – Gallantry
Hyacinth – Constancy of love
Ivy: Fidelity; marriage; wedded love; friendship; affection
Myrtle: the emblem of marriage; love.

Augusta Reuss of Ebersdorf, 1775
Pshhh, symbolic meaning.  We all know why she carried Sweet William down the aisle!  Sweet William was a popular flower found in gardens in the 18th century, but that isn't the only historical significance buried in that bouquet:
The bouquet contains stems from a myrtle planted at Osborne House, Isle of Wight, by Queen Victoria in 1845, and a sprig from a plant grown from the myrtle used in The Queen’s wedding bouquet of 1947.

The tradition of carrying myrtle begun after Queen Victoria was given a nosegay containing myrtle by Prince Albert’s grandmother during a visit to Gotha in Germany [I am pretty sure this is Augusta Reuss of Ebersdorf who was also Victoria's grandmother]. In the same year, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert bought Osborne House as a family retreat, and a sprig from the posy was planted against the terrace walls, where it continues to thrive today. 
 History romance coma! Isn't the whole thing just adorable?

Royal Wedding Twitter Party

Are you up? Are you ready? Are you prepared with your witty comments and fan to whisper them behind? More importantly, do you have your mimosa?  It's time for those young royals to be wed and we're going to talk throughout the whole ceremony without having to deal with any nasty looks from the people in front of us. Join in the gossip!

Follow me on twitter @GeorgianaGossip. I'm on the east coast and planning on arriving at the ceremony (virtually) at the same time as the queen: 10:40 GMT.  Don't have a twitter account? Leave comments, I'll certainly be up...unless my alarm clock fails me!


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tart Weddings: Maria and George Prince of Wales

It's the day before the big day!  The festive occasion bring to mind another English prince who set his eyes upon a another commoner and decided to make her his wife.  Let's hope these latest royals at the alter have better luck!  At least they have the sovereign's backing!

Maria had two husbands under her belt when she first met George Prince  of Wales. The first, Edward Weld, died three months after the wedding; the second, Thomas Fitzherbert, died three years after the wedding.  Maria then went into a sort of state of retirement and began a socialite life in London, it was there that she met the young prince.  Prinny was almost instantly smitten with Maria and pulled out all his tricks to seduce her.  But Maria wasn't going to budge, she was not interested in filling the role of "royal mistress." The prince would have to resort to more desperate measures.

One night while Maria was kicking up her heels at home there was a sudden desperate pounding on her door.  It was two messengers come to tell her that the prince had stabbed himself almost to death. His dying wish was to see Maria.  She flew to her carriage but not before asking to make a stop on the way to Carlton House.  That stop was Devonshire House.  Georgiana was enjoying drinks on the balcony with friends when she was called away and explained that her presence was needed and it was of dire importance.  Feeling as though she had no choice in the matter Georgiana handed party-duties off to her sister and joined Maria on the trip to Carlton House.  There they found the prince covered in blood, dramatically begging for Maria's hand in marriage.  She accepted, but a ring was needed to seal the deal which Georgiana begrudgingly provided.  The next day, Maria realized the magnitude of what was done (the prince couldn't marry without his father's permission, especially a Catholic) and possibly realized that she had been duped.  She flew to France to hide out in hopes Prinny would forget about her in her absence.

In this case though, absence does make the heart grow fonder and Maria eventually gave in to her yearnings for her socialite life...or a royal husband.  The December 15, 1785 ceremony was sketchy.  The two were married in the drawing room of her London home by Prinny's chaplain whose payment was the £500 bond needed to get him out of debtors prison. Maria's brother and uncle served as witnesses.  Not quite the usual royal wedding.

Of course King Dad was not pleased at all when he found out.  However he considered the marriage null and void since it was illegally done.  That didn't stop Prinny from seeing Maria, especially after his marriage to Caroline of Brunswick.  Maria considered Prinny to be her rightful husband (and a bigamist) until the day she died.  When he died in 1830, he wore and was buried with, a miniature of her around his neck.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Tart Weddings: Elizabeth and Augustus Hervey

Now it happens to be this opinionated gossiper's humble opinion that no good can come of people marrying solely in order to sleep together without guilt.  Just take Elizabeth Chudleigh and her flavor of the week, Augustus Hervey for example; disaster!

Elizabeth was quite the catch of the court and the fact that she was one of the Princess of Wales' maids of honour only added to her allure.  She had many admirers.  One of those admirers was James 6th Duke of Hamilton, who at the time was a minor and couldn't marry without his parents' consent.  He left for the grand tour with promises to return and wed Elizabeth (he would go on to marry Elizabeth Gunning on a whim) but her hormones were too wild to be able to wait that long.  The next man to come along was Augustus Hervey and he really had nothing to boast of.  Okay in the looks department and a zero in the heir department, Augustus was the second son of John Hervey and therefore joined the navy knowing his peer prospects were grim.  It was lust at first sight when the two met at Lainston House and it was there they made the rash decision to marry ASAP. James Who of Hamilton?
The remains of the chapel

Sneaking into a medieval chapel on Lainston grounds under the cover of darkness Elizabeth and Augustus sealed their fate.  Ironically the chapel was rarely used except for a mausoleum.  A single candle was used in the secret ceremony and the amount of witnesses you could count on one hand.  Without wasting a moment the couple immediately set out to consummate the marriage...since that was the only reason they got married in the first place.

Three days after the ceremony and bunny-like bedroom activities, duty called Augustus back to the sea.  In this case, absence did not make the heart grow fonder and Elizabeth chose to forget that the marriage ever happened, firstly to keep her maid of honour job and then because she regretted her hasty decision.  Augustus was surprised by his wife's rejection at first and then just shrugged it off and forgot about it too.

Elizabeth almost got away with the forgotten marriage too since there was no paperwork documenting the event.  However the greedy Elizabeth royally screwed herself when, years later, she visited the dying reverend who performed the marriage in order to gain paperwork proving they were married.  Why did Elizabeth do this when she herself had it set in her mind that the marriage never happened?  The covetous tart heard that Augustus may actually have a chance at the Earldom of Bristol after all.  In the end her actions screwed her.  She married the Duke of Kingston so she didn't need that paperwork to earn her a title after all, however it did earn her a trial for bigamy.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Naughty Prenuptials

"If you are at Goodwin...I hope you will take a walk up to the Carne Seat, sit down in the little room and think of that you took with Lady Emily Lennox..."  
 -Emily Duchess of Leinster to her husband

Many aristocratic teen girls got married off quickly and some of those girls got their teenage kicks.  Lady Emily Lennox was barely a teen when she caught the interest of James, Marquess of Kildare.  Like most high school relationships, her parents weren't thrilled with their daughter's crush on a guy in his twenties, despite the fact that he was a rich peer.  James was Irish, and unlike many aristos of the Emerald Isle, actually enjoyed living there.  The Lennoxes saw him as a guy from the wrong side of the tracks.  Did this bad boy bring out the saucy side of Emily? Who knows; but what we do know is that after James proposed to fifteen-year-old Emily she gave in to her, shall we say, carnal desires.  After church, on Christmas day, Emily and James took advantage of his empty summerhouse to give in to their feelings for each other. 

Now some mothers will scare their daughters about giving it up so easily because then there is no lure for the husband.  This certainly wasn't the case for James.  Whatever Emily did to him in that "little room" that she fondly remembered sixteen years later, James liked, and wanted more of.  Lord Kildare was especially anxious to wed now!  Two months later at a magnificent ceremony the two were formally joined.  Emily also made a great impression on her husband on their wedding night: 
"I don't believe, if I was to lie at Whitehall, I could ever sleep, for thinking that in that house it was that I first took possession of that which for about fifteen years I have enjoyed."
The two were madly in love and many children followed.  Perhaps Emily wouldn't be the teenage role model your mother would pick out for you but then again it would seem as if her actions didn't mislead her.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Tart Weddings: Grace and Dr John Elliott

When Grace Dalrymple stood at the alter of St Pancras [Old Church] in 1771 she couldn't have been more opposite of her intended husband.  Dr Elliott was not just twice Grace's age but he was also shorter and fatter than his supermodel-like young bride.  And don't even get me started on the opposite personalities!

At the time of the engagement Grace was quite common and quite unknown.  Yet, being the daughter of an Edinburgh lawyer she had a strong upbringing which molded her for a marriage above her station.  Dr Elliott had made a good name for himself as a doctor which brought the marriage a certain amount of attention.  The Rambler's Magazine described the blushing bride as:
" on the verge of 17, tall and very elegantly shaped; her features beautiful, and not in the least marked by any degree of that provinciality which distinguishes the females from the north; her complexion was clear as the clouds of a May morning, and tinged with the roseate blush of Aurora; her disposition lively, her temper mild and engaging."
Can we be so surprised, then, that these same notable features, so stunning to those witnesses when Grace walked up the aisle in her best gown in 1771, were not just noticed by Dr Elliott?  It took Grace less than three years to grow bored of her workaholic and toad-ish husband and scandalize him with a highly publicized affair which received more than a fair amount of attention in the press.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Yay or Nay? Princess Hedvig Elisabeth Charlotte

No dress-downers in this group!  Last week Lovisa Ulrika's wedding gown earned her a Yay although many people plead to the queen to add some jewelery.  The truth of the matter is, in other versions of the painting she wears a glitzy choker, sadly that version was of a yucky quality which is why I didn't feature it.  Speaking of which, what is it with yucky qualities and wedding gowns?  This week's selection is another wedding gown and you'll have to excuse the poor quality of image.

Alexander Roslin paints Princess Hedvig Elisabeth Charlotte (1774) in her wedding gown. OH WAIT this gown STILL EXISTS (click the link to help make your judgement)! Yay or Nay?

[Royal Armory]

Happy Easter!

Henry Raeburn, Boy and Rabbit, 1814

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A la Turque

For those of you lucky enough to be in the UK, there is a program on tonight called Secrets of Arabian Nights.  BBC News has a video snippet of the show regarding the book's arrival in Europe in the early 18th century.  Check it out here.  The video goes on to credit The Arabian Night's Entertainments (aka 1,001 Arabian Nights) with bringing the Turkish trend into vogue.  Let's check out some of the results of this new interest. 

Jean Baptiste Vanmour, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu with her son and Attendent , 1717
George Knapton, Portrait of Lady (Possibly Mary Wortley Monatgu)
Jean-Étienne Liotard, Richard Pococke, 1738-9
Jean-Étienne Liotard, Woman in Turkish costume in a hamam intructing her servant, 1742-3

Jean-Étienne Liotard, Marie Adelaïde de France en robe turque, 1753

Sir David Wilkie, Lady Hester Stanhope

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Miss Monckton Entertains (Part 2)

Part of the reason for Miss Monckton's success as a hostess was her ability for conversation.  She had an immaculate memory which no doubt contributed to her conversing abilities.  She also was a bibliophile which drew some big names to her drawing room like flies to honey.  Some of those big names were not always the most pleasant to converse with as James Boswell recounts:
Johnson was prevailed with to come sometimes into these circles and did not think himself too grave even for the lively Miss Monckton (now Countess of Corke), who used to have the finest bit of blue at the house of her mother Lady Galway Her vivacity enchanted the Sage, and they used to talk together with all imaginable ease A singular instance happened one evening when she insisted that some of Sterne's writings were very pathetick Johnson bluntly denied it. "I am sure (said she,) they have affected me."
"Why, (said Johnson) smiling and rolling himself about,) that is, because dearest you're a dunce." When she some time afterwards mentioned this to him he said with equal truth and politeness; "Madam, if I had thought so, I certainly should not have said it."

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Miss Monckton Entertains

The Honourable Miss Monckton was the daughter of Lord and Lady Galway and a famous society hostess. She had a trademark of receiving guests while sitting down.  Fanny Burney found that a bit alarming but went on to describe her as "between thirty and forty, very short, very fat, but handsome, splendidly and fantastically dressed, rouged not unbecomingly, yet evidently and palpably desirous of gaining notice and admiration."

Mrs and Miss Thrale
Once when Fanny and her friend Mrs Thrale were invited to a Monckton party they made the careless mistake of showing up on time.  Never show up on time to a ton event!  The events that follow sound like they could have been a retelling of a Lauren and Heather situation! How many times has this awkward situation happened to you?

I had begged Mrs. Thrale to call for me, that I might have her countenance and assistance upon my entrance. Miss Thrale came also. Every thing was in a new style. We got out of the coach into a hall full of servants, not one of which inquired our names, or took any notice of us. We proceeded, and went upstairs, and, when we arrived at a door, stopped and looked behind us. No servant had followed or preceded us. We deliberated what was to be done. To announce ourselves was rather awkward, neither could we be sure we were going into the right apartment. I proposed going up higher, till we met with somebody; Miss Thrale thought we should go down and call some of the servants; but Mrs. Thrale, after a ridiculous consultation, determined to try her fortune by opening the door. This being done, we entered a room full of tea-things, and one maid-servant.
Fanny Burney
"Well," cried Mrs. Thrale, laughing, "what is to be done now? I suppose we are come so early that nothing is ready."
The maid stared, but said,—"There's company in the next room."
Then we considered again how to make ourselves known; and then Mrs. Thrale again resolved to take courage and enter. She therefore opened another door, and went into another apartment. I held back, but looked after, and observing that she made no curtsey, concluded she was gone into some wrong place. Miss Thrale followed, and after her went little I, wondering who was to receive, or what was to become of us.
Miss Monckton lives with her mother, the old Dowager Lady Galway, in a noble house in Charles-street, Berkeleysquare, The room was large and magnificent. There was not much company, for we were very early. Lady Galway sat at the side of the fire, and received nobody. She seems very old, and was dressed with a little round white cap, and not a single hair, no cushlori, roll, nor any thing else but the little round cap, which was flat upon her forehead. Such part of the company as already knew her made their compliments to her where she sat, and the rest were never taken up to her, but belonged wholly to Miss Monckton.
Miss Monckton's own manner of receiving her guests was scarce more laborious ; for she kept her seat when they entered, and only turned round her head to nod it, and say "How do you do?" after which they found what accommodation they could for themselves.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Tart Weddings: Mary and Thomas Robinson

Many of our tarts have commonalities in their marriages.  The first being they were usually miserable, the second being they were extremely young when the nuptials took place.  Such was the case with Mary Darby who would be most well-known as 'Perdita' to London society.

St Martin-in-the-Fields, more
crowded than at Mary's wedding
Mary had humble beginnings which began in Bristol.  In her teenage years she caught the attention of David Garrick who saw her star potential and sought to make her a great actress.  However her mother had different ideas and viewed Garrick as an eager agent filling a girl's head with visions of fancy.  She instead encouraged Mary to take the hand of Thomas Robinson an illegitimate son and accounting clerk.  Mary turned down her blooming acting career to become wife at the tender age of fifteen.

An example of a
Quaker gown
On 12 April 1773 at Saint Martin-in-the-Fields the Robinson marriage took place.  Although Mary's account written years later is shadowed with inaccuracies due to her bitter feelings toward her husband we can, however,  always depends on Mary to give us great deets on what she was wearing.  Mary walked up the aisle in habit of a Quaker despite not being a Quaker herself.  She felt the somber attire was appropriate for a child-bride in order to represent her purity.  But that attire was quickly shed after the ceremony.  For the modest reception (more of a breakfast) Mary changed into a muslin gown with a chip hat and satin slippers.  Let the party begin!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Yay or Nay? Lovisa Ulrika

The maternity-wear of Natalia Alexeievna set many people's sentimental hearts a-flutter.  The tartly and short-lived princess earned herself a Yay for the effort.  Well, I don't know about you but I can't help but be buzzing about a certain wedding this week.  You should all know how very difficult it is to find an era-appropriate portrait of a woman in her wedding gown!

Antoine Pesne's followers recreate the artist's 1744 painting of Lovisa Ulrika in what is thought to be her ivory wedding gown.  Yay or Nay?

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wouldst Thou Dance Wiv Me?

How many of you are familiar with Dizzee Rascal? No, no, he isn't fop or the subject of a George Stubbs painting. Dizzee is a rapper hailing from East London. Well known in the UK, but not so much in the Colonies, Lauren and I were introduced to Mr. Rascal via one of our shared favorite djs, Calvin Harris*. See for yourself:

Catchy, no? Well rumor has it that in working on his latest album, Dizzee has drawn inspiration from some interesting sources. "Dizzee hopes reading poetry will broaden his horizons and make him an even better rapper. He knows he has to push himself to make a great fifth album and reading accomplished poets can only help." Those "accomplished poets" that Dizzee has gotten close with happen to be John Keats, William Blake, Lord Byron and William Wordsworth. An interesting collection if you ask me; I thoroughly approve! I am very curious to see the effect of these fellow Englishmen on Dizzee.

Keats: Woman! when I behold thee flippant, vain,
Inconstant, childish, proud, and full of fancies;
Without that modest softening that enhances
The downcast eye, repentant of the pain
That its mild light creates to heal again -Woman When I Behold Thee
Blake: But most, through midnight streets I hear
How the youthful harlot's curse
Blasts the new-born infant's tear,
And blights with plagues the marriage hearse. -London
Byron: Fill the goblet again! for I never before
Felt the glow which now gladdens my heart to its core;
Let us drink ! --- who would not ? --- since, through life's varied round,
In the goblet alone no deception is found. -Fill the Goblet Again
Wordsworth: Heed not tho' none should call thee fair;
So, Mary, let it be
If nought in loveliness compare
With what thou art to me. -To Mary
Rascal: It's not a long ting, your the boom ting.
Maybe more than a hotel room ting.
I'll never know if I just walk past, I really wanna dance so I guess I'll just ask. -Dance Wiv Me

What I would love to see Dizzee do is a well-done adaption of the classic poetry, just like the psychobilly band, Tiger Army (another fav of mine) did with Poe's Annabel Lee.  He could totally bring back Byron's Fill the Goblet!

The Sun

*For a funny story, ask either of us about the time we met Mr Harris!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dinosaurs in the Fop Age

When it comes to the modern history of dinosaurs it was the 19th century when everyone went fossil crazy and actually began thoroughly studying the giant lizards.  But the long 18th century (really long) has some dino discoveries as well.  In fact, one could say that the forward thinking of the Enlightenment aided in shaking off the superstitious thinking of the past which created more logical ideas about those prehistoric bones.

For example, Megalosaurus is a frightfully English dinosaur.  When its femur was unearthed in 1675 Dr Robert Plot and other experts at Oxford determined it to be that of a giant...the warm-blooded kind that live up in beanstalks.

Almost 100 years later part of a Mosasaurus skull was found in a quarry in the Netherlands.  Being the Enlightenment, the educated minds knew this wasn't something silly like an ogre.  This time it was determined to be a fish.  Our scientific minds were getting a little closer.  Mosasaurus was not a fish but it was one of those dinosaurs that you would find swimming around in rivers.

The esteemed zoologist Georges Cuvier has many achievements under his belt.  Perhaps the coolest being that he discovered the Pterodactyl. Apparently "Pterosaur" is the correct term although it was Cuvier who dubbed the dino, "Ptero-Dactyle."  Not only did Cuvier discover one of the most well-known species of dinosaur but he discovered it by looking at a drawing of the fossils found in Bavaria.  It's like identifying a new type of mammoth over email!  Cuvier also cleared up the whole Mosasaurus/fish issue.

Left: Mary and her dog, Tray (who accompanied her in fossil
hunting and died in the line of duty due to a landslide)
  Right: A Victorian (and inaccurate) depiction of two of Mary's discoveries.

Ladies dominated the Regency with their dinosaur discoveries. Take Mary Anning for example.  She was a mere twelves years old when she unearthed the rest of an Ichthyosaur skeleton, the head of which her brother had found, in Lyme Regis in 1811.  She is credited with the dinosaur's discovery.  While other ladies were embroidering Mary could be found dangerously scaling cliffs in order to collect as many fossils as possible and went on to discover the Plesiosaur and the first Pterodactyl Pterosaur outside of Germany.  In other words, Mary was awesome.

Mary's work with fossils inspired Gideon Mantell to follow in her footsteps.  But Gideon is a lying jerk about many things in his life so it is not in my interest to credit him with anything.  His wife, May Ann, on the other hand (who left him in 1839 which I think says a lot about Mr Mantell!) was a clever cookie and probably made many of his dinosaur discoveries.  It was she who found a tooth while taking a stroll in 1822 which turned out to be that of an Iguanodon.  Mary Ann went on to discover other fossils and illustrate her husband's discoveries (hmph, take "husband's discoveries" with a grain of salt).

The word "Dinosaur" itself wasn't coined until the Victorian age.  It was Sir Richard Owen who came up with the name.  Ironically, he disagreed with Darwin's theory of evolution.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Chiswick Tour

On this day in 1748 the man of many talents, William Kent died.  Rising from humble beginnings, Kent began as an artist and would become a leading architect with landscape and furniture designer also on his resume.  Besides taking a strong role in updating Kensington Palace (which you can read all about in the fantastic The Courtiers) Kent also worked with fellow architect, Lord Burlington to revamp Chiswick House after a fire damaged the original country retreat.

Together the Earl and Kent created a much more fantastic home than the original Jacobean house that had been passed down into Lord Burlington's possession.  Inspired by his love-affair with Italy, the Earl figured his house burning down would be a good excuse to get his own villa.  How convenient, *fans self with air of suspicion.*  But with all suspicions aside, the result of the two architectural minds together is quite gorgeous.

The Upper Tribune aka Domed Hall aka Saloon was inspired by the Basilica of Maxentius and Constantine, the building which used to house that famous colossal statue of Constantine.  The iconic dome is just as impressive from the inside as the outside.  Inlaid on the floor is an eight-pointed star of the Order of the Garter which Lord Burlington received from King George II. It was rumored he also secretly received the same honor from the exiled Stuarts.  The painting in the room of Charles II does not aid in dispelling this rumor.

Also inspired by ruins from the Roman Forum was the Gallery.  This series of rooms overlooked the gardens and were modeled after the Temple of Venus and Roma.

Like many stately homes, it is difficult to decide which is more impressive, the house or gardens which is the case with Chiswick as well.   Can you guess the theme they went with?  If you said ancient Roman and/or Greek you were right.  Kent had a real knack for creating the pastoral fantasy garden ideal for strolling in.  He based his designs off of artists like Poussin.

Instead of making the geometric gardens so common in European palaces, Kent and Burlington went for a natural romping ground where guests could discover enchanting aspects such as a cascade or hidden temple.  An artificial river was even put in so as to complete the two architects' fantastic vision.

No wonder Georgiana referred to Chiswick as her "earlthy paradise." 

Monday, April 11, 2011

Okay Ladies...

...Who was it who showed up to Chatsworth this weekend for their bachelorette party dressed as tarts?


Nicolas de Largillière, Study of Hands, 1715

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Yay or Nay? Princess Natalia Alexeievna

Poor Lady Charlotte.  She had a passion for the retro and our panel took one look and said Nay, no way, Lady!  It's such a bummer when the empire-waist makes you look pregnant.  Then there are the times when you are pregnant and get your portrait painted (how rare!).  What to wear then?

Alexander Roslin paints Natalia Alexeievna (1775) in her pastel green long-sleeved jacked over a peach gown.  Yay or Nay?


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Clara the Celebrity Rhino

There were many celebrated animals wowing the people of the Enlightenment.  There was the pig that was smarter than a 5th grader, the Duke's of Richmond's moose, the hermaphrodite horse (which I can't find any info on past the fact that he/she was compared to Horace Walpole), and so on and so forth.  But perhaps one of the larger of the animal celebrities was Clara the Rhinoceros.

Clara's humble beginnings come straight out of a Disney movie.  Her mother was killed when Clara was a month old and somehow the Rhino tot ended up in the hands of the director for the Dutch East India Company, Jan Albert Sichterman. Sichterman raised Clara like any pet; she lived indoors with him and would eat her food off a plate.  But as we all know Rhinoceroses tend to outgrow our humble human houses, and if they don't I am sure their poop does.  Sichterman sold his large pet to a Captain van der Meer, who had aspirations to show Clara off to the world.

Now Europe had a bit of a history with attempting to bring Rhinos to their continent and them dying on the way.  Van der Meer was determined to succeed.  On her sea voyage Clara was given an abundance of vegetables and had her skin oiled daily so it would not dry out.  Although, I dare to ponder on the fact that rhinoceroses comes from dry climates and probably don't need to be slathered in fish oil (Clara must have smelled bad).

Van de meer's methods worked and Clara arrived safely in the Netherlands.  She then was exhibited around the country and became so popular that van der Maar gave up his seafaring career to exhibit her.  Clara then went on a rockstar tour across Europe.  Not only did she meet some of the illustrious rulers of Europe; Marie-Theresa of Austria, Frederick II of Prussia, King Louis XV; but was also painted by the great artists of the time.

Jean-Baptiste Oudry who was a court dog painter who painted a life-size portrait of Clara (above).  Oudry's newly-restored depiction shows how Clara continued to have her skin oiled-down for ultimate rhinoceros sheen; it also displays a rather sharp horn.  I have a feeling Oudry embellished the pointy-ness of the horn.

The most accurate portrayal in my opinion would be Clara's appearance in a German anatomy book.

When Clara's rock and roll tour landed in Italy Pietro Longhi was enchanted by the rhino and featured her in multiple works.  By that time Clara's horn was gone although we don't know if it was from her rubbing it off due to being closely confined or if it was cut off.  If the later, it would fetch quite a price considering there were plenty of Clara souvenirs during this Rhino-mania. 

The rock tour ended in London in 1758 when Clara died at the age of twenty.  After over fifteen years on the road, the rhino that enchanted Europe met her end thousands of miles away from her beginnings in India.