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THE WORLD'S GOSSIP. There has been much talk of the Queen and the enormous numb-M- of despatches which she has read lately, but I wonder if many know that Her Majesty reads these despatches in bed. That is the case. however, both at Windsor and at Osborne. At Windsor the Royal bed is placed under a small window, which throws a convenient light for reading1, and the despatch box is always brought with the morning' cocoa. After breakfast the actual writing is done, but it is generally over before half-past eleven, when the famous doukev- chair arrives at the door for the morning stroll. The Queen certainly works hard at times, but I fancy that some of the stories told about her labours are very ridiculous. The Queen's flower gardens at Balmoral are now looking' very charm- ing, and the se ason being so much later than, the Isle of Wight. Iler Majesty will enjoy the fresh- ness of her northern home. The dahlias which the Queen admires.so much are from year to year improving in size and form and they sport into such endless varieties that they have become the most extensively cultivated Royal autumn bloom. I am told rhat during the process, or operation, or function or ceremony (choose your own wonl) of •' kissing hands "at Osborne, an eminent person. who is probably unaccustomed to grovelling on the floor upon his knees, was uliable to rise after being' transformed into a Privy Councillor. His struggles to regain his feet were ludicrous (he is of stoutish build and inclined to rheumatism) in the extreme. Even Her Majesty, who has a hearty appreciation of the comic side of things, could I scarcely restrain her smiles. The difficulty was smoothed over when a polite Court official came forward and helped the flushed and sprawling Councillor to his feet. Really it is something rough on these aged and respectable gentlemen that they should be compelled to perform Salvation Army knee-drill on a slippery parquet^oor. The Prince and Princess of Wales will see little of Sandringham this year until Christmas. They have refused nearly the whole of the many invita- tions they have received from autumn house parties, but it is understood that they may be the guests of the Duke and Duchess of Portland on their return journey south, and they have pro- mised to visit Lord Cadogan in .January. The Prince seems determined to face the cholera scare. and nothing will move him from the delights of Hamburg. the Queen. they say. is in a great state at his refusal to come home, but up to the moment of writing those at Marlborough House have no reason to think that he would alter his plans, although he has been medically advised to do so. The Pri nee is taking the waters of Hamburg with that stolid determination which the average Briton is famous for displaying in everything he does, from fighting to football. Dressed in a grey tweed suit and a soft hat. he arrives at the springs punctually at a certain fixed hour. swallows his draught, and then indulges in a constitutional. Some of the smaller fry who are always to be found busily buzzing round the big guns are far more punctilious in their dress. A Russian Prince. with an unpronounceable name, always takes his dose attired in a frock coat, a glossy silk hat. and pale lavender gloves. Perhaps this early morning attire aids his digestion and assists in promoting the ''cure. It must, in any case. be a source of satisfaction, not to say joy. to his tailor. The Duchess of Edinburgh intends to pass the autumn in Coburg. at a Jugd-Schloss. belonging to Duke Ernst of Sase-Coburg-Gotha.. The heredi- tary Princess Charlotte of Saxe Meiningen and her daughter, the Princess Feodora, are at present staying with the Duchess, who is warmly attached to the Princess Charlotte. The Princess Feodora. who is the eldest great-grandchild of the Queen, is just thirteen years old. and is extremely pretty and very musical. The visits of the Duchess of Edinburgh and the Princess Marie to the Queen of Roumania at Xeu Wied. proved very pleasant. and Queen Elizabeth, by her fascinating manner and re Sued beauty, pleased her future niece greatly, who also made a good impression on Carmen Sylva." The Queen of Roumania re- mains in much the same state of health. Her illness is almost entirely a nervous one. to which she has been subject ever since the death of her only child. The attacks have always come on after any nervous excitement, though until the trouble with Mdlle. Helene Yacarescu, the illness had only been temporary. It is hoped that the Queen may be able to return eventually to Rou- mania, though the progress made is very slow. Creeping paralysis is dreaded by her physicians. The Empress Eugenie has sent from England to the Empress Frederick a large gold medallion, hearing the arms of the Monty's family. In the jewel is enclosed a lock of hair of the late Emperor Napoleon and the giver, surrounded by diamonds and other stones of great value. The ex-Empress of the French, it is said. will also send to Berlin as wedding present for Princess Margaret, a magnificent dinner service, which was once in use at the Tuileries during the Empire. The spectacle of this omnipotence the Czar of all the Russians wheeling a peramubator must be about as startling as would be the sight of the Olympian Jove trundling a wheelbarrow. And yet he has more than once been seen to perform this humble domestic office for the children of Princess Marie of Orleans, the wife of Prince Waldemar of Denmark. There will, apparently, be very grand doings at the Palace of Weimler on the celebration of the golden wedding of the Grand Duke and Duchess. The historic little city. rich in its varied association of literature and chivalry, will present a scene of gaiety and even grandeur such as has never been equalled throughout its long history. Not only is the palace being almost entirely re-furnished, but a large number of houses in various parts of the town are being specially fltted up and repaired for the reception of the numerous Imperial, Royal, and otherwise distinguished guests who are expected. The German Emperor and Empress, with their whole suite: the King of Romania, King and Queen of Saxony, the Regent of Bavaria, two Austrian Archdukes. and the Grand Duke Vladimir, as representative of the Czar, have already signified their intention to dignify the pro- ceeding with their presence. In addition to these no fewer than one hundred other personages of Royal blood will be there and, of course, the diplomats and petty potentates, who will shine by reflected lights, will be as plentiful as thistles in an Australian cornfield. The House of Montgomerie, of which the kite Earl of Eglinton was the head and chief. has held ■a foremost position in the nobility of Scotland for over six centuries, and traces its descent from Robert De Montgomerie. a scion of the noble English family of that name. who was a witness to the foundation of the Abbey at Paisley, and died about 1180. His grandson, an adherent of Robert the Bruce. was one of the great Barons of Scotland, who were summoned to appear at Berwick in 1291: and his great grandson. Sir Alexander Mont- gomerie, was father of Sir John, who married the heiress of Eglinton. niece to King Robert II. of Scotland. The eldest son of this union fought at Otterbourne, and made prisoner Sir Harry Percy, and his son was raised to the Scottish peerage as Lord Montgomerie. The hitter's son, the second baron. was Ambassador to England in 1451, and the grandson, the third baron, was created Earl of Eglinton in 1503. It was the father of the late Earl who endeavoured to revive the pageantry of the middle ages by giving a tournament ill 1839. one: of the competitors who entered the lists bcing Louis Napoleon, afterwards Emperor of the French. One of the great difficulties of the knights was the mounting of their horses, the great weight of their armour wrenching down their saddles directly they attempted to get up by the stirrup. All but Lord Egiintan had to be hoisted into their saddles like so many recruits in an army riding- school but, although the Montgomerie's steed stood over sixteen hands high, its rider, holding by the mane, and without touching the stirrup, i vaulted into his seat as lightly as a feather. The then Earl of Eglinton was undoubtedly the most notable figure among the knights, both in grace of bearing and also in strength and agility. At Eglinton Castle, where he exercised quite a mediaeval hospitality, gnests coming and staving at their own sweet will. lie was regarded with a sort of hero-worship, and it was almost an article of faith that he could not be beaten at any manly exercise. The Right Hon. Jesse, our new Privy Councillor, is more proud of the recollection that his mother once worked as a "field hand." or agricultural labourer, than of the new handle to his name. If he had only known what had happened at Hawar- den when he was speaking at Southampton, he would have had an admirable toxt to lay before the Rural Labotirers' Union. For that base desertion six years ago of the cow and three acres, upon which he enlarged for the hundredth time, has at length been expiated. The cow has had her re- venge, and it was a revenge which came perilously near doing for Home Rule and all that. Seriously speaking, I wonder how many old gentlemen of 85 could stand being knocked down and trampled upon by a. wild heifer and then get up" apparently none the worse" for his adventure. Mr. Gladstone is heartily to 6e congratulated upon his escape, and I take the fact that he attended church as usual the next dav to be proof that he is really as well as apparently none the worse. The cow it was that died." The Lord High Chancellorship of England and physical beauty do not seem destined to run in double harness in these degenerate days. Lord Herschel is far from being a handsome man but he is a distinct improvement upon his predecessor, Lord Halsbury. who now takes a back seat made comfortable with the gold lining of a- £ 5,000 per annum pension. There is certainly no suggestion of the Greek-God style of beauty in the homely appearance of the ex-Lord Chancellor. Age. how- ever, has brought some sort of improvement. Thirty years ago the South Wales Circuit took a strange pride in young Hardinge Giffard, then an unknown and untried barrister. It was the unchallenged boast of the members of that circuit that in,him they possesed the ugliest junior know to the profession. Once, when the budding chancellor was prosecutinga well-known gaol-bird at the Glamorganshire Quarter Sessions, he s*> far forgot himself as to refer to the evidences of moral depravity visible in the man's contenance. The prisoner promptly interposed with the remark. If I'd started life with such a mug as yonr'n. guv'nor, I'd have been hung long ago."



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