Fashion Victim: High Society, Sociability and Suicide in Georgiana Cavendish’s The Sylph

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


On Tuesday 15 September 1789 a son of the French chancellor shot himself on arrival in Brighton. When efforts were made to repatriate his remains it was preferred that he stay ‘in the fatal soil of England’. It would appear that the soil of England was indeed fateful as the unfortunate Monsieur de Maupean had been in the country for less than 24 hours before he committed suicide. On his person was found a packet of papers including two credit notes, one for 6000 livres and one for ‘whatever sum he might have occasion’, and at the New Ship Inn his personal effects consisted of ‘two valuable watches, one of them set with diamonds; two diamond crosses of the Order of Knights of Malta; three miniatures of a Lady, set in gold; a pair of diamond shirt sleeve buttons’, a considerable amount of hard cash in varying currencies including 91 shillings, and a cryptic note that declared ‘“Je meurs innocent; J’en atteste de Ciel” I call Heaven to attest that I die innocent.’
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDisease and Death in Eighteenth-Century Literature and Culture
EditorsAllan Ingram, Leigh Wetherall Dickson
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-137-59718-2
ISBN (Print)978-1-137-59717-5
Publication statusPublished - 28 Sept 2016

Publication series

NamePalgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine


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