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Written by JulieW
(11/29/2006 5:17 a.m.)
We learn in Letter 22 that JA went to a Gala evening at the Sydney Gardnes, which had been postponed from the 4th June due to bad weather. Note the 4th June was King George III's birthday and so that date was celebrated nationwide each year.This gala was in aid of that.
There were three galas each sumerer at Syney Gardens in this period of the garden's history: 4th June,as above; the Prince of Wales Birthday on 12th August,and another gala sometime in July ,the date of which varied so as to coincide with the summer Bath Horse Race Meeting.
Here is the announcement of the gala from The Bath Chronicle :
Note that there is a Mr Hershell included in the list of orchestral players.This was Mr Alexander Herscell who was the brother of the famous astronomer, William Herschell.
Go here for his history :-)
This being England it was not unusual for galas in these gardens ( open to the elements)to be postponed!.
The gardens opened for the Gala at 5p.m. The food and drink avaiable included :
cold ham, chicken, lamb, and tongue,wine,spirits, bottled porter, cider, perry all as reasonable as possible the prices of which wil be affixed on the bills of fare and placed in every conspicuous part of the Garden.
(see Bbath Chronicle as above)
The reason teh prices wre so conspicuously affaixed thoguhout the gardens is that it prevented teh waiters overcharging, a problem that was prevealent inthe Lonfon pleasure gardens.
You could eat in the Bangueting Room in the Sydney Gardens Tavern or in the canvas booths outside. Those eating in the outdoor booths did have the option of staying in them the whole evening,and I would imagine on a chilly English summer's evening this would have been a very tempting proposition!
The concert began at 7p.m. Note that JA avoided it by arriving at 9p.m.!LOL
The galas generally went on till 10 p.m. So Ja was only there for one hour! it would ahve cost her 2 shillings to attend, so Line perhaps you are right and she must have detested the Orchestra at the gardens!
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