The Man from the Hornet introduces our semi-regular series on “Dandies” – as inspired by the Player’s cigarette card collection of 1932…
Nice pair o’ pins, ol’ Beau Fielding. So much so that he had a special carriage built, one that was slightly smaller, all the better to make his limbs looks more impressive.
Clever stuff. Kinda like a reverse, 17th Century version of the tips for big fellas that we blogged about HERE a little while ago.
Robert Fielding (1650 – 1712) went under a number of different nicknames. As well as Beau, he was often Handsome Fielding. (The Man From the Hornet interjects: Yes, I know the feeling.) (The Guv’nor adds: Yes, me too.) (Wallace tuts: Pair of buffoons. Carry on, please…)
His crucial qualification in becoming a dandy was running up vast amounts of debt and marrying rich woman to pay it all off for him – in this case the widowed Duchess of Cleveland.
The twist in handsome Bob’s tale is that the women turned out not to be rich at all – and was merely a “decoy” put into place by the Duchess of Cleveland’s watchful staff to save her from her terrible fate. Undeterred, Fielding continued his pursuit of the Duchess, finally getting his woman in 1705.