The Diarists: This week in history

Elizabeth Byrom daughter of the poet and diarist John Byrom, on the arrival of the Jacobite army under Bonnie Prince Charlie

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Indy Lifestyle Online

24 November 1813

Lord Byron poet: "To Lady Melbourne I write with most pleasure – and her answers, so sensible, so tactique – I never met with half her talent. If she had been a few years younger, what a fool she would have made of me, had she thought it worth her while – and I should have lost a valuable and most agreeable friend. Memorandum: A mistress never is nor can be a friend. While you agree, you are lovers; and, when it is over, anything but friends."

25 November 1975

Sir Roy Strong director of the V&A: "Princess Margaret and Colin Tennant arrived. HRH… addresses rather than speaks to you. She is, as we all know, tiresome, spoilt, idle and irritating. She had just come back from Australia, which she hated. The traffic lights were not even cancelled any more and there was no escort for her, and no crowds…

"Colin said what did one expect of HRH? She had been deliberately brought up as the younger sister, not to be competition. Taught only to dance and sing and that was that. She had been the first one to break out of the charmed circle and now it seems all against her. She has no direction, no overriding interest. All she likes now is la jeunesse dorée and Young Men."

26 November 1745

Elizabeth Byrom daughter of the poet and diarist John Byrom, on the arrival of the Jacobite army under Bonnie Prince Charlie: "They are at Preston this morning, came in there at ten o'clock, behaved very civilly; everybody is going out of town and sending all their effects away, there is hardly any family left but ours and our kin; they have shut up shop and all the warehouses in town almost are empty; tonight the bellman is going about to forbid anybody sending provisions out of town, for a great many have today. Dr Mainwaring says the rebels have done nothing but what a rabble without a head might have done."

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