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Double Duchess


The foundation stone of this church was laid by Louisa Frederica Augusta Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire... now there’s a mouthful! ⠀

Formerly Louisa Montagu, Duchess of Manchester... she is often referred to as the ‘Double Duchess’. ⠀

While she was not the inspiration behind former Black Eyed Pea, Fergie’s second studio album; ‘Double Dutchess’... she still had some stories... and she probably knew how to spell duchess correctly. ⠀

At the age of 27, Louisa was entertaining some foreign visitors with a game of paper chase... a little like a fox hunt game of tig. The game is played by designating one person as a fox and everyone else in the group as hounds. The fox starts off ahead of everyone else leaving behind a trail of paper shreds as ‘scent’. After a designated time, the hounds chase after the fox and attempt to catch them before they reach the finish line.⠀

On this particular day, the game of paper chase was being played over a long distance of English countryside: through woods, across fields and over stiles. ⠀

Climbing over a stile, while trying to catch the fox with a group of foreign dignitaries as hounds, Louisa caught a hoop of her skirt on a post. She fell head over heels, landing with her skirt and petticoat over her head... revealing her scarlet drawers to the entire company. ⠀

One French Ambassador, Jean-Jacques Pélissier... exclaimed at the sight, ‘C'était diabolique!" ⠀

‘Listen here Pelissier, in your tight pantaloons... I would like to see you try climbing over a fence in an ankle length, wooden hooped skirt and see how you fare!...  diabolical? ... Jog on Jean-Jacque’.⠀

Louisa went on to catch the fox.

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