The Profligate Son: 1 of 4: Or, A True Story of Family Conflict, Fashionable Vice, and Financial Ruin in Regency Britain Kindle Edition by Nicola Phillips (Author)

Feb 12, 04:05 AM



English: Water-colour painting of Gwalior Fort in Madhya Pradesh from the north-west, c.1790. Although no artist's or engraver's name is attached to this plate, it formed part of a series of aquatints redrawn by William Orme from paintings by Thomas Daniell and Francis Swain Ward 'in the possession of Richard Chase, late Mayor of Madras'. Chase, who was Mayor of Madras in 1800, had obtained a number of Ward's pictures on his death in 1794. As Daniell did not visit Gwalior, the aquatint (plate 11) must have been made from one of Ward's pictures. Although Ward spent his army service in Madras, it is clear that he visited northern India on at least two occasions: the first before his return to England in 1764, the second during his final stay in India between 1773 and 1794. Amongst the paintings presented to the East India Company in 1773 was a view of Sher Shah's tomb, Sasaram (Bihar), obviously dating from his first visit, and in the 'Twenty-four views in Hindostan' are impressions of Calcutta and of Anupshahr (U.P.). Since Anupshahr is about 140 miles due north of Gwalior which was in enemy hands until 1779, it is likely that Ward visited both places during an extended tour of Upper India after his retirement from the army in 1787.

Fecha 1790


Autor Ward, Francis Swain (1736-1794)


Public domain 

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The Profligate Son: 1 of 4: Or, A True Story of Family Conflict, Fashionable Vice, and Financial Ruin in Regency Britain Kindle Edition by Nicola Phillips (Author)

Foppish, impulsive, and philandering: William Jackson was every Georgian parent's worst nightmare. Gentlemen were expected to be honorable and virtuous, but William was the opposite, much to the dismay of his father, a well-to-do representative of the East India Company in Madras. In The Profligate Son, historian Nicola Phillips meticulously reconstructs William's life from a recently discovered family archive, describing how his youthful misbehavior reduced his family to ruin. At first, William seemed destined for a life of great fortune, but before long, he was indulging regularly in pornography and brothels and using his father's abundant credit to swindle tradesmen. Eventually, William found himself in debtor's prison and then on a long, typhus-ridden voyage to an Australian penal colony. He spent the rest of his days there, dying a pauper at the age of thirty-seven.

A masterpiece of literary nonfiction as dramatic as any Dickens novel, The Profligate Son transports readers from the steamy streets of India, to London's elegant squares and seedy brothels, to the sunbaked shores of Australia, tracing the arc of a life long buried in history.