Excerpt from Wedlock by Wendy Moore, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Wedlock

The True Story of the Disastrous Marriage and Remarkable Divorce of Mary Eleanor Bowes, Countess of Strathmore

By Wendy Moore

Wedlock

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Later publishing his own version of what he described as the “late affair of honour” in The Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser, Hull had declared his surprise, given the darkness of the room and the ferocity of the fencing, that “one of the combatants were not absolutely killed on the spot.” It was a sentiment with which the two medical men, Foot and Scott, readily agreed. In a joint statement published in the same newspaper, in which they described their patients’ injuries in detail, the pair attested that Stoney’s chest wound had “bled very considerably.” They concluded “we have every reason to believe, that the rencontre must have determined fatally, had not the interposition of the gentlemen who broke into the room put an end to it.” Indeed, as Foot helped the ailing Stoney into his carriage and rode with him back to the officer’s apartment at St. James’s Coffee House in nearby St. James’s Street, his professional concern was so great that he insisted on stopping en route in Pall Mall, at the house of the celebrated surgeon Sir Caesar Hawkins, for further medical assistance. One of the most popular surgeons in London, numbering George III among his patients, the elderly Hawkins visited Stoney in his rooms two hours later. Although he did not personally examine the wounds, merely checking the patient as he languished in bed, Hawkins would later add his own testimony as to the severity of the duelist’s injuries. Four respectable witnesses, therefore, all testified to the life- threatening nature of Stoney’s wounds. It was scarcely surprising, then, given the captain’s plight, that the object of his devil- may- care venture should visit her hero the very next day.

Excerpted from Wedlock by Wendy Moore Copyright © 2009 by Wendy Moore. Excerpted by permission of Crown, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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