Saturday, 6 February 2016

Carlton House - a Regency History guide

Carlton House from Pall Mall from Ackermann's Repository (1809)
What was Carlton House?

Carlton House was the London residence of George IV from 1783 to 1826. He spent an exorbitant amount of money remodelling and refurnishing it, but after becoming King, he decided it was inadequate for his needs. George moved out in 1826 and Carlton House was demolished to make way for an exclusive housing development which still stands on Carlton House Terrace today.

History

Carlton House derived its name from Henry Boyle, Baron Carleton, who owned the property in the early 18th century. (1) The house passed to the family of the 3rd Earl of Burlington, and was then sold to Frederick, Prince of Wales, George III’s father. After the death of Frederick’s widow, Princess Augusta, in 1772, the house stood vacant. 

In 1783, the future George IV came of age and he was given Carlton House in which to form his own household. By this time, it was badly in need of renovation and George III obtained a grant from Parliament to make Carlton House a suitable residence for his son.

George IV as Prince of Wales
by John Hoppner (1792)
Photo by Andrew Knowles
Portrait © The Wallace Collection
Rebuilding Carlton House

George employed the architect Henry Holland to remodel Carlton House. Unfortunately George’s extravagance reached legendary proportions. His expenditure was always far in excess of his funds and he ran up huge debts on this and other building projects. At one stage, he shut up Carlton House for a while in an effort to economise, but ultimately he was forced to get married in order to persuade Parliament to release more funds.

The partly finished house won Horace Walpole’s approval, though he wondered how it was to be paid for. After visiting Carlton House in 1785 he wrote:
“We went to see the Prince’s new palace in Pall Mall; and were charmed. It will be the most perfect in Europe. There is an august simplicity that astonished me. You cannot call it magnificent; it is the taste and propriety that strike. Every ornament is at a proper distance, and not one too large, but all delicate and new, with more freedom and variety than Greek ornaments.”
He went on to say:
“The portico, vestibule, hall, and staircase will be superb, and, to my taste, full of perspectives; the jewel of all is a small music room, that opens into a green recess and winding walk of the garden. In all the fairy tales you have been, you never was in so pretty a scene, Madam: I forgot to tell you how admirably all the carving, stucco, and ornaments are executed; but whence the money is to come I conceive not – all the tin mines in Cornwall would not pay a quarter.” (2)
It is unlikely that Walpole would have approved of some of George’s later alterations!

More rebuilding

George’s building projects seemed to go on forever. He was rarely satisfied with the final result for long and was continually remodelling Carlton House and redecorating the rooms. After Holland’s death, he employed a variety of other architects to help him realise his ever-changing vision. Thomas Hopper added the Gothic Conservatory, whilst James Wyatt and John Nash completely remodelled the basement storey. Edward Wyatt added carved and gilded doors whilst Walsh Porter, who had set himself up as a connoisseur, added sumptuous draperies, curtains and wall hangings.

The Conservatory, Carlton House, from
The History of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
According to Gronow:
“This building was constantly under repair, but never improved, for no material alterations were made in its appearance.” (3)
Life at Carlton House

Gronow described Carlton House in 1813 as “a centre for all the great politicians and wits who were the favourites of the Regent”. (4)

George held many magnificent entertainments at Carlton House, including a notable fête in June 1811 after becoming Regent. You can read about the fête here and the dreadful chaos of the public open days that followed here.

The demise of Carlton House

By 1815, George was losing interest in Carlton House. He no longer thought that it was grand enough for his residence and after his mother’s death in 1818 he announced his intention of moving to Buckingham House. But of course, some work would have to be done in order to make it suitable. And of course, it wouldn’t be cheap. In an effort to raise money, he gave up Carlton House completely in 1826, stripping it of its furniture and fittings for reuse in Buckingham Palace and other royal residences. The house was demolished and superior housing erected on the appropriately named Carlton House Terrace.

Carlton House Terrace on site of Carlton House
Captain Gronow described Carlton House as “one of the meanest and most ugly edifices that ever disfigured London, notwithstanding it was screened by a row of columns” (3), so perhaps he, at least, did not see it as such a great loss.
 
For a long time, I’ve believed that eight of the columns that had once fronted Carlton House were used for the portico of the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, but the National Gallery website seems to suggest that the architect, Wilkin, decided they were too small, and it is only conjecture that they were used in the east and west porticos instead! (5)

A tour of Carlton House

Although Carlton House no longer stands, fortunately, George IV liked to have pictures painted of his royal residences and many of the rooms are included in Pyne’s A History of the Royal Residences. There is also a floor plan available. However, it is not always straight forward to match the descriptions with the rooms as George had a habit of changing their names when he redecorated!

Room layout of principal floor of Carlton House from Illustrations
of the Public Buildings of London by J Britton and A Pugin (1825)
anotated from key by Rachel Knowles
The North Front

The Microcosm of London stated:
“Carlton House, with its courtyard, is separated from Pall Mall by a dwarf screen, which is surmounted by a very beautiful colonnade.” (6)

Carlton House from Pall Mall from Memoirs
of George IV by R Huish (1830)
The North Front, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The Great Hall

From Pall Mall, you entered Carlton House through a portico and into the Great Hall. The Microcosm of London stated:
“There is in this hall a symmetry and proportion, a happy adjustment of the part to produce a whole, that are rarely seen; it is considered as the chef d’oeuvre of Mr Holland, and would do honour to any architect of any age or country.” (6)
According to Britton and Pugin, the Great Hall had:
“an air of classical elegance, and while it is sufficiently spacious to correspond with the approach through the portico, is neither so large, nor so splendid, as to detract from the effect of the apartments to which it conducts: a fault that too frequently occurs in mansions where the magnificence of the entrance creates expectations that are not gratified, and thus produces an anti-climax in architecture.” (7)
The Hall, Carlton House, from the Microcosm of London
by R Ackermann and WH Pyne (1808-10)
The Hall of Entrance, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Octagonal Vestibule

The Vestibule was octagonal in shape. On three sides, it had arches leading to the Grand Staircase, the Great Hall and the State Apartments; on a fourth side, a closed-in arch displayed a chimneypiece with a bust of the Prince of Condé and an enormous mirror. The other four sides of the octagon had marble busts by Nollekens on display. (8)

The Vestibule, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The Grand Staircase

The Grand Staircase consisted of a flight of steps up to a landing place and then two further flights of steps which curved round up to the chamber floor. Below, a second staircase led to the lower suite of apartments.

Grand Staircase, Carlton House,  from Ackermann's Repository (1812)
Grand Staircase, Carlton House, from The History
 of the Royal  Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The Gallery of the Staircase, Carlton House, from
The History of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The State Apartments

The State Apartments were on the principal floor and reached through the West Ante Room, on the right after entering through the portico from Pall Mall. These consisted of the West Ante Room, the Crimson Drawing Room, the Circular Room and the Throne Room.

West Ante Room

This was a waiting room for people calling at Carlton House on business.

West Ante Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Crimson Drawing Room

This room derived its name from the festooned draperies of crimson satin damask that were suspended from the cornice and in the windows.

Crimson Drawing Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Circular Room (on floor plan as Dining Room)

At some stage, this room was clearly used as a dining room as it is labelled as such on the floor plan.

Circular Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Throne Room

The throne consisted of a “chair of state and footstool, elevated upon a platform, and surmounted by a magnificent canopy; the whole being of crimson velvet.” (8)

Throne Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Rooms of Private Audience

These rooms were reached by walking through the Great Hall and the Octagonal Vestibule and consisted of the Ante Room, the Lesser Drawing Room and the Lesser Throne Room, which adjoined the Throne Room.

Ante Room

Ante Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Ante Room looking north, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Lesser Drawing Room/Crimson Bow Room/Rose Satin Drawing Room

This room was decorated partly in the Chinese style and contained the Table of the Great Commanders which is now normally on display at Buckingham Palace.

Rose-satin Drawing Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Rose-satin Drawing Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Lesser Throne Room/Old Throne Room/Ante Chamber leading to the Throne Room

This room was the original throne room and contained portraits of George III and Queen Charlotte by Ramsay as well as portraits of the Prince Regent and the Duke of York.

Ante Chamber leading to the Throne Room, Carlton House,
from The History of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Private Rooms

The Prince’s Private Rooms were situated on the left of the Ante Room and consisted of the Private Audience Chamber and Private Closet.

Private Audience Chamber/Blue Velvet Room

Blue Velvet Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Private Closet/His Majesty’s Closet/Blue Velvet Closet

Blue Velvet Closet, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The South Front

The South Front, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
As the level of Pall Mall was higher than that of the gardens, there was a suite of apartments in the basement of the south front.

The basement storey

The suite of rooms on the basement storey was reached by descending the lower part of the Grand Staircase and entering the Lower Vestibule or Ante Room. To the left of the Ante Room was the Library, the Golden Drawing Room and the Gothic Dining Room while to the right was the Bow Sitting Room, the Ante Room to the Dining Room, the Dining Room and the Conservatory.

Room layout of left-hand side of basement floor of Carlton House from 
Illustrations of the Public Buildings of London by J Britton and A Pugin (1825)
anotated from key by Rachel Knowles
Room layout of right-hand side of basement floor of Carlton House from 
Illustrations of the Public Buildings of London by J Britton and A Pugin (1825)
anotated from key by Rachel Knowles
Lower Vestibule or Ante Room

Lower Vestibule, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Library
 
The bookcases in the library were made of oak in the Gothic style and “the cornices are contrived to conceal spring rollers, which contain a fine collection of maps, that can be displayed for reference without inconvenience.” (8)

George’s librarian was Dr Stanier Clarke.

Golden Drawing Room/Corinthian Room

Golden Drawing Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
The Alcove, Golden Drawing Room, Carlton House, from
The History of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Gothic Dining Room

Gothic Dining Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Dining Room

Dining Room, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Conservatory

The conservatory was constructed in “the florid Gothic” style.
“Its form resembles that of a cathedral, upon a small scale, having a nave and two aisles, which are formed by rows of clustered carved pillars, supporting arches, from which spring the fans and tracery that form the roofs. The interstices of the tracery of the ceilings are perforated and filled with glass, producing a novel, light, and appropriate effect.” (8)
Conservatory, Carlton House, from The History
of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)
Armoury

There was an Armoury on the attic storey, where the Prince displayed his collection of ancient and modern arms including, apparently, the dagger of Genghis Khan. (8)

Notes
(2) From Walpole, Horace, The Letters of Horace Walpole, edited by P Cunningham, in nine volumes (1859)
(3) From Gronow, Captain RH, Captain Gronow's Last Recollections, being the fourth and final series (1866)
(4) From Gronow, Captain RH, The Reminiscences of Captain Gronow (1862)
(6) From Ackermann's Microcosm of London vol 1 (1808-10)
(7) From Illustrations of the public buildings of London by Britton and Pugin (1825) vol 2
(8) From The History of the Royal Residences by WH Pyne (1819)

Sources used include:
Ackermann, Rudolph, and Pyne, William Henry, The Microcosm of London or London in miniature Volume 1 (Rudolph Ackermann 1808-1810, reprinted 1904)
Britton, John and Pugin, Augustus, Illustrations of the public buildings of London (1825)
Gronow, Captain RH, Captain Gronow's Last Recollections, being the fourth and final series (1866)
Gronow, Captain RH, The Reminiscences of Captain Gronow (1862)
Pyne, WH, The history of the Royal Residences of Windsor Castle, St James's Palace, Carlton House, Kensington Palace, Hampton Court, Buckingham House and Frogmore (1819)
Robinson, John Martin, Buckingham Palace, The official illustrated history (2011)
Walpole, Horace, The Letters of Horace Walpole, edited by P Cunningham, in nine volumes (1859)

Websites
British History online
National Gallery

Friday, 22 January 2016

Elizabeth Fry - prison reformer (1780-1845)

Elizabeth Fry from Elizabeth Fry, the angel of the prisons
by LE Richards (1916)
Profile

Elizabeth Fry (née Gurney) (21 May 1780 – 13 October 1845) was a Quaker minister famous for her pioneering work in prison reform. She is currently depicted on the British £5 note.

An unhappy childhood

Elizabeth Gurney was born in Norwich, Norfolk, on 21 May 1780, one of the 12 children of John Gurney and Catherine Bell. Both her parents were from families that belonged to the Religious Society of Friends, more commonly referred to as the Quakers. John Gurney was a wealthy businessman operating in the woollen cloth and banking industries.

Elizabeth, known as Betsy, was moody, often unwell and tormented by numerous fears. She was dubbed stupid by her siblings for being slow to learn, but was most probably dyslexic. In 1792, Betsy was devastated when her mother died.

Conversion

Betsy’s family were ‘gay’ Quakers as opposed to ‘plain’ Quakers. Though they attended the weekly Quaker meetings, they did not abstain from worldly pleasures like the theatre and dancing or wear simple clothes as ‘plain’ Quakers did.

In 1798, an American Quaker named William Savery visited the Friends’ Meeting House in Goat Lane where the Gurneys worshipped. Betsy had a spiritual experience which was strengthened later that year when she met Deborah Darby, a Quaker minister, who prophesied that Betsy would become “a light to the blind, speech to the dumb and feet to the lame”. (1)
 
Betsy gradually adopted the ways of a plain Quaker, wearing the simple dress and Quaker cap in which she is depicted on the British £5 note.

In 1811, Betsy became a minister for the Religious Society of Friends and started to travel around the country to talk at Quaker meetings.

Elizabeth Gurney from Elizabeth Fry, the angel of the
prisons
by LE Richards (1916)
Marriage and family

On 19 August 1800, Betsy married Joseph Fry, a plain Quaker whose business was tea and banking. They went to live in Mildred’s Court in Poultry, Cheapside, London, which was also the headquarters for Joseph’s business. In 1808, Joseph inherited the family estate at Plashet in East Ham, further out of London.

It was a fruitful marriage though not always a harmonious one. Joseph and Betsy had 11 children: Katherine (1801), Rachel (1803), John (1804), William (1806), Richenda (1808), Joseph (1809), Elizabeth (1811), who died young, Hannah (1812), Louisa (1814), Samuel Gurney (1816) and Daniel Henry (1822).

Betsy’s prison ministry

Throughout her life, Betsy was active in helping others. At Plashet, she established a school for poor girls, ran a soup kitchen for the poor in cold weather and was the driving force behind the programme for smallpox inoculation in the parish.

In 1813, while living at Mildred's Court, she visited the women’s wing of nearby Newgate Prison for the first time. Betsy was filled with compassion for the awful state of the women and took flannel clothes with her to dress their naked children.

The front of Newgate Prison
from Old and New London Vol II by Walter Thornbury (1872)
Over the next few years, Betsy’s life was absorbed by family issues, but in 1816, she resumed her visits to the women in Newgate Prison. With the support of the female prisoners, she set up the first ever school inside an English prison and appointed a schoolmistress from among the inmates.

Encouraged by her success, Betsy set out to help the women themselves. She read the bible to them and set up a workroom where the women could make stockings. All the female prisoners agreed to abide by Betsy’s rules. Against all odds, the scheme was successful. The women became more manageable and the atmosphere of the prison was transformed.

Elizabeth Fry in Newgate Prison from Elizabeth Fry, the angel of the
prisons
by LE Richards (1916)
Fame and influence

News of Betsy’s success spread and she was inundated with requests for advice from prison authorities and ladies who wanted to set up prison visiting.

Over the years that followed, Betsy visited prisons up and down the country, in Scotland, Ireland and on the continent. She became one of the foremost authorities on prison conditions and twice spoke as an expert witness on the subject to Parliamentary Select Committees – in 1818 and again in 1835.

Many of Betsy’s recommendations were included in the Prison Act of 1823 and in 1827 she published Observations on the Visiting, Superintendence and Government of Female Prisoners which became a manual for good management of prisons and prison visiting.

Family problems

Betsy found it hard to balance family life with her extensive ministry. She was plagued continuously with ill health and oscillated between periods of intense activity and times of nervous exhaustion and depression. She often had to delegate her domestic responsibilities to her husband and other family members whilst she devoted herself to good works. Although Joseph always supported his wife, he sometimes complained that she neglected him.

The Frys were often forced to economise because of financial problems with Joseph’s business. Betsy’s brothers repeatedly came to their rescue, but in 1828, Joseph was declared bankrupt. They had to move permanently to a much smaller house in Upton Lane, Essex, and Joseph was expelled from the Society of Friends in disgrace.

Other areas of ministry

As well as her prison work, Betsy was able to improve the lot of women being transported to Australia for their crimes, providing them with a bundle of belongings to help each woman make a fresh start after their long voyage.

She instigated a project to provide libraries of books for the coastguards whose chief role of preventing smuggling made them isolated and unpopular. This was so successful that the government took over the project and extended it to the navy.

Betsy also set up the first nursing academy, to train nurses who could go into private homes and provide care for those who could not normally afford it.

A fitting end

Betsy died on 13 October 1845 whilst on a holiday in Ramsgate. Her funeral was held at the Friends’ Meeting House in Barking on 20 October. The funeral procession from her house to Barking was over half a mile long. Even more mourners waited in Barking to celebrate the life of this remarkable woman.

In 1914, a marble statue of Elizabeth Fry was erected inside the Old Bailey in London, on the site of the Newgate Prison where her prison ministry had begun.

Notes
(1) From the journal of Elizabeth Fry, 4 September 1798, as recorded in Life of Elizabeth Fry: compiled from her journal, as edited by her daughters, and from various other sources by Susanna Corder (1853).
(2) Corder, De Haan, Hatton and Isba all record Elizabeth Fry's death as the 13 October 1845, but some sources state the 12th.

Sources used include:
Corder, Susanna, Life of Elizabeth Fry: compiled from her journal, as edited by her daughters, and from various other sources (1853)
De Haan, Franciscas, Fry (née Gurney) Elizabeth (1780-1845), Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn May 2007, accessed 24 Aug 2015)
Hatton, Jean, Betsy - the dramatic biography of prison reformer Elizabeth Fry (2005)
Isba, Anne, The Excellent Mrs Fry - unlikely heroine (2010)

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Hair powder and pomatum

George III in a white wig; George IV, Maria Fitzherbert
and William Cavendish, Duke of Devonshire,
showing the effect of powder in the hair (8)
The fashion for hair powder

The fashion for putting powder in your hair allegedly started with Henry IV of France (1553-1610) who started using brown powder in his hair to hide the grey hairs. Those around him hurried to adopt the custom. It did have an additional benefit. Powder helped to reduce the greasiness of the hair which was useful at a time when hair washing was certainly not a daily pursuit!

Wigs and white powder

Henry IV’s son Louis XIII (1601-1643) also had a hair problem—he started to go bald at a young age. To hide his baldness, he started to wear a long haired wig and, unsurprisingly, his courtiers soon followed suit. The fashion spread to England and was adopted by Charles II (1630-85) and his court. 

The rarest and most expensive wigs were white. As a result, people put white powder on their wigs in order to make them look as white as possible. People also used white powder on their hair. It intensified the blondeness of very fair hair but made darker hair look grey, the shade depending on the natural hair colour.

George IV as Prince of Wales
by John Hoppner (1792)© The Wallace Collection
In my novel, A Perfect Match, Mr Merry reluctantly allows his manservant to powder his hair for a ball:
“John handed Mr Merry his hat and cane and grinned. For once, he had managed to persuade his young master to stand still for long enough to powder his hair thoroughly, heightening the blondeness of its colour. John secretly thought that there were few gentlemen who could wear powder to such good effect.” (1)
A universal fashion

Powder was not just a fashion adopted by the few; its use was widespread throughout most of the 18th century and not to use it was seen as a breach of social etiquette.

In her novel, The Sylph, published in 1778, Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, wrote:
“Monsieur bowed and shrugged, just like an overgrown monkey. In a moment I was overwhelmed with a cloud of powder. ‘What are you doing? I do not mean to be powdered,’ I said.
‘Not powdered!’ repeated Sir William; ‘why you would not be so barbarous as to appear without—it positively is not decent.’” (2)
In her journal, Mary Frampton wrote of 1780:
“At that time everybody wore powder and pomatum.” (3)
In 1789, she went on to write:
“I was dressed as a grown-up person for the first time, and wore powder, then the mark of distinction of womanhood.” (3)
What was hair powder made from?

Hair powder was made from flour or starch and varied considerably in quality, with the best powders being made from highly refined starch. 

Although white was the most popular colour, other shades were also used, including brown, grey, orange, pink, red, blue and violet.

Horn and ivory powder bottles
on display at the Science Museum, London
Powdering room

Putting on hair powder was a messy and time consuming business. First the hair was covered with hair lotion known as pomade or pomatum which helped the powder to stick. Then the person being powdered was covered with a powdering gown or protective apron whilst the powder was applied using a set of bellows. A cone shaped device could be used to cover their face to prevent the powder going into their eyes.

In 1791, Mary Frampton’s journal stated:
“The ladies wore the hair flowing down their backs and high in front, with much pomatum and powder put on with different kinds of puffs. The finishing powder had a brown hue and a strong perfumed smell, and was called ‘Maréchale’ powder. This powder was applied at a distance, that every hair might be frosted with it. One pound, and even two pounds, of powder were sometimes put into the hair or wasted in the room in one dressing.” (3)
Ideally, this operation would take place in a special room – a powdering room or closet – in order to contain the mess. In Dr Johnson’s House Museum in Gough Square, London, there is a set of double doors off the parlour which lead to his powdering closet. This was where he stored his wigs and sat to have powder applied without spreading it all over the house.

The Parlour, Dr Johnson's House Museum, Gough Square, London
The double doors to the right of the fireplace lead to
 Dr Johnson's powdering closet.
Sweet Cypress Hair Powder

In A Perfect Match, set in 1788-9, the heroine’s mother, Mrs Westlake, wears her hair “fashionably powdered”. She could have bought her hair powder from Sharp’s along with the Olympian Dew she used to prevent wrinkles. You can read about the wonders of Olympian Dew in an earlier blogpost here.

According to an advertisement in The Times, Sharp’s could offer:
“Sweet Cypress Hair Powder (made by Sharp). It is the lightest, sweetest and the best for the Hair of any 1s 2d (4) per Pound, Stamp included; or 11s (5) per Dozen – All Sorts of Hair Powders made (as may be seen every Day) from the purest French Starch, and sold Cheaper than at any other House.” (6)
What does “stamp included” mean?

William Pitt the Younger introduced a sales tax on hair powder in 1786. Taxing fashion was a clever move as people who wanted to be fashionable were forced to pay the tax. It is this tax that the phrase “stamp included” refers to. Clearly the seller was paying the sales tax on behalf of the consumer. The tax was charged at a rate of 1d for items costing less than 8d; increased to 1½d for items costing between 8d and 1s; and rose to a maximum of 1s for items costing more than 5s. 

This stamp duty was not just on hair powder but was payable on “every packet, box, bottle, phial, or other inclosure, that shall contain any sweet scents, odours, or perfumes, or any dentifrice, or other preparation for the teeth, or any pomatum, hair powder, or other preparation for the hair”. (7) However, it was only the hair powder that was advertised as “stamp included”.

Pomades and pomatums

In the advertisement in The Times, Sharps also recommended:
“Rose, Orange, Jessamine, Violet, and white Marechalle Pomatums, that will keep good in any Climate twelve months; 1s per Roll and Pot.
The Pomade de Grasse, Sharp has sold with great Reputation and Success for many Years; and now, as heretofore, does most solemnly assure the Public, that it will certainly and effectually thicken and strengthen the Hair; keep it from falling off or turning Grey. Sold with Directions for Use.
The very best Foreign Powders and Pomatum, wholesale and Retail.” (6)
The decline of hair powder

In 1795, Pitt introduced a new tax on hair powder. Those wishing to use hair powder had to obtain an annual certificate for the privilege at a cost of one guinea. There was an outcry against the expense of this licence and the tax did not have quite the effect that Pitt had hoped for. 

There was already a move toward more natural hairstyles and many people chose to abandon their hair powder altogether rather than spend a guinea on a licence. The tax never brought in the anticipated revenues; it simply hastened the demise of the fashion for hair powder.

'Leaving off powder, -or- a frugal family saving the guinea'
by James Gillray (1795) © British Museum
Notes
(1) From Chapter 10 of A Perfect Match by Rachel Knowles (2015).
(2) From The Sylph by Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire (1778).
(3) From The Journal of Mary Frampton (1779-1846) by Mary Frampton, edited by Harriot Georgiana Mundy (1885).
(4) The monetary system was in pounds, shillings and pence represented by the letters l, s and d respectively.
(5) This is difficult to read but I think it says 11s, that is, 11 shillings.
(6) From "To The Ladies. Sharp,." Times [London, England] 12 Apr. 1788: 2. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 24 Jan. 2015.
(7) From Debrett (ed), The Parliamentary Register or History of the Proceedings and Debates of the House of Commons during the third session of the Sixteenth Parliament of Great Britain (1787).
(8) The collage consists of the following pictures:
George III from Bissett, Robert, The History of the Reign of George III (Edward Parker, 1822, Philadelphia)
George IV as Prince of Wales by John Hoppner (1792) Photo by Andrew Knowles Portrait © The Wallace Collection
Maria Fitzherbert by Sir Joshua Reynolds (c1788) © NPG London
William Cavendish, 5th Duke of Devonshire by Anton von Maron Photo by Andrew Knowles Portrait © Chatsworth

Sources used include:
Cavendish, Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, The Sylph (1778)
Debrett (ed), The Parliamentary Register or History of the Proceedings and Debates of the House of Commons during the third session of the Sixteenth Parliament of Great Britain (1787)
Frampton, Mary, The Journal of Mary Frampton (1779-1846) edited by Harriot Georgiana Mundy (1885)
Knowles, Rachel, A Perfect Match (2015)
The Démodé website 
Times Digital Archive

All photographs © www.regencyhistory.net