In 1792 the Carlton House Magazine ran an article, with an accompanying illustration (shown above), of two female petticoat duellists. The two participants were identified, in the magazine, as Lady Almeria Braddock and Mrs. Elphinstone.
The two ladies were taking tea when Mrs. Elphinstone, after an exchange of ‘bloated compliments’ between them, said to Lady Almeria, “You have been a very beautiful woman.”
Lady Almeria: “Have been? What do you mean by ‘have been’?”
Mrs. Elphinstone: “You have a very good autumn face, even now . . . The lilies and roses are somewhat faded. Forty years ago I am told a young fellow could hardly gaze on you with impunity.”
Lady Almeria: “Forty years ago! Is the woman mad? I had not existed thirty years ago!”
Mrs. Elphinstone: “Then Arthur Collins, the author of the British Peerage has published a false, scandalous and seditious libel against your ladyship. He…
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