Correspondence with Mrs Forbes

Name of traveller

Louis Antoine Philippe d'Orléans, duc de Montpensier (1775-1807)

Reason for travel

  • in exile in Twickenham
  • seems to be in Wales to make sketches

Date of travel


At the moment I am writing this letter, my ears are delighted with the sounds of a Welsh harp played by a blind harper. (d'Orleans MS2358)


  • series of letters to a friend, Mrs Forbes
  • art:
    • mentions own habit of producing sketches from landscape
    • enjoys Welsh harp music, but finds Welsh musician inferior to 'a certain Scottish harper'
    • memorises a number of Welsh tunes to teach to a friend in Scotland
  • diet: claims Wales is 'not the land of cakes'
  • people:
    • intends to visit the Ladies of Llangollen, , Eleanor Charlotte Butler (1739-1829) and Sarah Ponsonby (1755-1831), but decides against it because of a horse-racing event held by Sir Watkin Williams-Wynn (1772-1840), and he wishes to avoid society visits
    • meets Lord and Lady Penrhyn at their inn in Capel Curig, but does not realise who they are until afterwards
  • recreation: impressed by Lord Penrhyn's inn in Capel Curig; compares it favourably to inns in London area
  • terrain:
    • summit of Snowdon only glimpsed through clouds
    • Snowdon compared to Ben Nevis
    • claims he avoids speaking of the beauties of nature becuase he detests affectation
    • mentions rainy weather; this makes him draw or colour his sketches indoors
  • transport:
    • modes of travel: on foot, horseback, horse carriage
    • description of own road accident with the horse carriage and near accident involving a woman on a donkey
    • poor quality of roads and the general danger af travelling on them
  • extracts of the collection of letters published in: Hay, Malcolm. Prince in Captivity: Based on the Memoirs and Unpublished Letters of Antoine Phillipe d'Orléans duc de Monpensier, 1775-1807. London: Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1960. Print.

Nationality of traveller


Language of publication


Gender of traveller


Type of publication



d'Orléans, Antoine Philippe. Correspondence to Mrs Forbes, Seaton House, Aberdeen. MS 2358 University of Aberdeen. MS.