Miss Maria Rose Tunno, 1783-1853
Materials towards a biography
The life of Sir Martin Archer Shee : president of the Royal Academy ... (vol. 1)
by his son Martin Archer Shee
[pp359-:] The name of Maria Tunno finds no place in the strictly literary records of her time; although, had she been ambitious of such a distinction, no one was more fully qualified by nature and education, to take a prominent rank among the most gifted of her sex who have, in this century, adorned the literature of our country. But it may be safely asserted, that in the social memories of many among her surviving contemporaries, who are most remarkable for intellectual power, and sympathetic appreciation of congenial talent, her remembrance is still treasured with a mingled feeling of enthusiastic admiration and affectionate regret, such as the brightest reminiscences of mental and moral superiority can seldom suffice to inspire and sustain.
Perhaps no one ever combined in a higher degree the vigour of a masculine and powerful understanding, with that delicacy of feeling and true refinement of mind, that go so far to make up the beau-idéal of the female character. Assuredly no one who has enjoyed the privilege of her familiar acquaintance, can ever forget the fascination of manner, the unrivalled grace of demeanour and expression that, in her unstudied conversation, gave to the more serious, as well as to the lighter topics of discourse, a charm as rare as it was captivating.
From her early youth, and during the remainder of a life of the most active kindness and constant mental exertion, she enjoyed the friendship of many of the most eminent persons who have graced the social annals of this century; and while encountering these master spirits of the age on a footing of admitted mental equality, and receiving from them the homage of a deferential admiration, she was equally successful in winning the regard and respectful affection of those who, less qualified to appreciate her rare endowments of mind, were not less sensible of the graceful and considerate courtesy, obliging amiability, and genuine warmth of heart which shone conspicuous in every action of her life.
Citizen-Scholar: Essays in Honor of Walter Edgar
edited by Robert H. Brinkmeyer, Jr.
[ESSAY:] The Worlds of John Tunno
Barbara L. Bellows
John Tunno ... was christened in August 1746 in Dunse, a Berwickshire village ... John's father, George Tunno, was a farmer who may not have owned the land he tilled. ... John's mother was Mary Dickson ... During John's youth his family moved about twenty miles away to Kelso ...
In all George and Mary Dickson Tunno would have seven sons. ... The two born immediately after John- Robert (1748) and Archibald (1750)- trained as bankers and chose London. Robert later became a stockbroker. ... George (1752), Adam (1753), William (1760) and Thomas (1762)- all followed John across the sea to Charleston.
Under John's direction these brothers would eventually work in concert, forming an array of partnerships with one another (as well as with other Scots) ...
Charleston ... In 1767, when he first arrived, Tunno entered into an environment where many young Scots were competing to make their fortune in rice, indigo, and slaves ...
The Autobiography of William Jerdan
A. Hall, Virtue & Co., London
I was born on the 16th of April, 1782, being the third son and seventh child of John Jerdan and Agnes Stuart, both of Kelso, in the county of Roxburgh, Scotland.
My father was an only son, and descended from a long line of respectable landowners, of small estate.
... he resolved on a volunteer voyage, and after some stay in London, about 1760-61, took that trip, instead of the grand tour, and visited the East as a private gentleman, when such expeditions were, indeed, exceedingly rare. The late eminent merchant, Mr. John Tunno, was an officer in the ship in which he went, and he not only formed a friendship with that gentleman, but with Mr. Kerr, afterwards of Kippilaw, and Governor of Bombay, which was marked by a cadetcy to my eldest brother, and lasted to the end of their lives.
John Tunno married Margaret, daughter of John Rose, on 18 Oct 1781 in St. Philip's church, Charleston, South Carolina.
A Global Clan: Scottish Migrant Networks and Identity Since the Eighteenth ...
edited by Angela McCarthy
[p78-80: details of John Rose, another Scottish emigrant and Loyalist, who left Charleston for Jamaica in 1782, taking 170 slaves with him.]
The National Archives, Kew
Reference: PRO 30/55/35/114
Description: 4116. John Tunno to [General] Clinton. Charlestown. A detailed appeal for redress respecting a decree of the Board of Police by which the writer is in danger of imprisonment for debt. He is also denied the right of recovering money owing to himself.
Note: Note (old vol 23) (see item nos 4047, 4094)
Date: 1782 Feb 5
[This is just one sample of various documents relating to the harassment of Tunno by local officials biased against Loyalists]
John and Margaret's first child, Maria Rose Tunno, was born on 7 Sep 1783, just before they were exiled from the United States.
While rebuilding his business in England, John settled in America Square, close to London's docks.
Their first British-born child may have been Robert (christened 26 August 1786). Harriett Tidyman Tunno was born in 1787 (christened in December), Hester Matilda Tunno in 1789 (christened 11 November), Eliza Rose Tunno in 1790, George about 1792, Edward Rose Tunno in 1794 (christened 26 November), Caroline Tunno in 1796 (christened 11 June), Augusta Rose Tunno in 1797 (christened 31 October), Louisa Tunno in 1799 (christened 13 February) and finally Rosa Tunno in 1803 (christened 2 December).
Robert Tunno, son of John, of America Square, was buried at St. Botolph Without Aldgate on 30 Aug 1786.
John Rose Tunno, son of John, of America Square, was buried at St. Botolph Without Aldgate on 25 Jul 1789. Assuming that Hester was not his twin, christened late, it is possible that he was born around 1785, before Robert, and christened in a parish which had not yet had its registers fully indexed.
George Tunno, child, of America Square, was buried at St. Botolph Without Aldgate on 2 May 1792.
The London Directory for 1797 gives John Tunno's address as 6 Old Jewry, just west of the Bank of England in the heart of the City financial district, where they were still living in early 1803.
Louisa Tunno "from St. Mildred Poultry" [the parish in which Old Jewry was situated] was buried at St. Botolph Without Aldgate on 19 Feb 1799.
By December 1803, the family had moved to fashionable Devonshire Place in the West End parish of St. Marylebone.
According to the Morning Chronicle of 21 April 1813, John Tunno's third daughter Matilda married [Peter] Urbanus Sartoris Esq. in London the previous day.
The Cheltenham Chronicle for 12 August 1813 lists Mr and Mrs Tunno among the newly-arrived visitors to the resort. The list does not mention the children of most of the arrivals, though in a couple of cases, "and family" is appended to a name. The surname Tunno appears again, without designation, among many other bare surnames at the end of the list; this might refer to Maria, who would be over 21 by that time.
The Early Married Life of Maria Josepha, Lady Stanley ...
Edited by Jane H. Adeane
Longmans, Green & Co., London
Winnington : April 24, 1814
[presumably from Lady Stanley; addressee unspecified]
The account you give of Madame de Staël confirms what I have heard. Miss Tunno wrote that Madame de Staël first heard of the entrance of the allies into Paris from her brother-in-law, a Swiss, and that she appeared by no means pleased with the intelligence. In a subsequent letter she says Madame de Staël sent to the Duchess of Orleans to desire she might be informed that Madame de Staël 'approved and admired the conduct of the Emperor of Russia.' The Parisian expedition is at an end for us, even in conversation.
Madame Moreau's brother is just arrived from Paris, and represents travelling as at present impossible, such are the numbers of English flocking the same way. He says there are hundreds of English at Calais, unable to get forward for want of conveyances.
Before and after Waterloo
Letters from Edward Stanley, sometime Bishop of Norwich
T. FISHER UNWIN
Lady Maria Stanley to her sister, Lady Louisa Clinton
Alderley Park, April 30, 1814.
So the Parisian expedition is at an end for us ...
Lodging at Paris is difficult to be had, and there are even serious apprehensions of a scarcity of provisions there. Moreover, the wise ones would not be surprised if things were in a very unsettled and, perhaps, turbulent state for some months. This is Miss Tunno's information, confirmed by other accounts she has had from Paris.
Miss Tunno is very intimate with Mdme. Moreau and a cousin of hers. All her accounts have been conformable with yours.
[EDITOR'S FOOTNOTE:] Madame Moreau, widow of General Moreau, daughter of General Hulot, and a friend of the Empress Joséphine. Since the death of the General, who was killed at the battle of Dresden, in 1813, the Emperor Alexander had given Mme. Moreau a pension of 100,000 francs a year in recognition of her husband's services; and in 1814 Louis XVIII. gave her the rank of "Maréchale de France."
Mrs. E. Stanley to Lady Maria Stanley.
London, Wednesday, June [11?], 1814.
Where did we go to be made fools of by the Emperor yesterday for four hours? We went with Miss Tunno, got introduced to a gentleman's tailor in Parliament Street, and looked out of his window; saw a shabby coach and six pass, full of queer heads, one of which was so like the prints of Alexander, and bowed so like an Emperor, that I must and will maintain it to have been him till I can receive positive proof that it was not.
[MY FOOTNOTE: The "Emperor" would be Tsar Alexander I of Russia]
The Globe of 11 September 1815 lists Mr and Mrs Tunno among the arrivals at the seaside resort of Ramsgate (again, the list only occasionally indicates "and family").
POEMS AND REFLECTIONS
BY A Young Lady
[identified in the British Library catalogue as E. King]
JOHN BOOTH, DUKE STREET, PORTLAND PLACE
LIST OF SUBSCRIBERS.
His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent. 6 copies
The Rt. Hon. Countess of Aboyne ...
Edward Tunno, Esq. Devonshire Place.
Miss Tunno, do.
Archibald Constable and His Literary Correspondents: A Memorial, Volume 2
MR. LESLIE to MR. CONSTABLE.
EDINBURGH, 14th Dec. 1818.
You will no doubt see the Somervilles frequently? Pray, do you hear anything of Miss Tunno? When you were at Leeds did you see the Gotts?
The Public Ledger and Daily Advertiser, 17 May 1819:
[DEATHS:] May 15, at his house in Devonshire Place, to the inexpressible grief of his afflicted family, John Tunno, Esq., in the 74th year of his age.- His loss will long be deeply deplored amongst the large circle of his much attached friends.
Hereford Journal, 9 Jun 1819:
DIED ... In London, John Tunno, Esq., proprietor of the Boverton estate, in Glamorganshire. This truly respectable London Merchant is said to have accumulated the immense fortune of 750,000£.
Probate on John Tunno's will was granted on 21 May 1819 to his widow Margaret, his son Edward, his daughter Maria, and Sir Thomas Baring (plus William Gordon Esq., named in a codicil). They were instructed to invest part of his capital or stocks in annuities at 3% interest, sufficient to pay Margaret an income of at least £2,700 yearly, and Maria £600 yearly. More such investments were to be made to pay £600 yearly to Maria's sisters Harriet Alicia Tidyman Tunno, Eliza Wright Tunno, Caroline Tunno and Augusta Tunno (all over 21 years old when John made his will) and Rosa Tunno (to have her income on attaining the age of 21). However, at the time he made his will, John had applied to invest £300,000 in a new annuity scheme paying 3½% interest, and he noted that if this application succeeded, that fund was to be used to make the aforementioned yearly payments. The application did succeed, so in a codicil, John raised the yearly payments for each daughter to £700.
Even at the increased payment rate to his sisters, Edward was left with a great deal of invested money as residual legatee, plus Cobbett's land, and other real estate etc. (including the manor of Boverton in south Wales, which John had acquired a few years previously).
The Derby Mercury of 12 August 1819 lists Mrs Tunno and family among the recent arrivals at the spa resort of Buxton.
In 1820, newspaper lists of donors to charitable causes around London tend to feature Mrs Tunno and/or Edward Tunno.
Bell's Weekly Messenger, 6 May 1821:
[The Royal Academy exhibition:]
M.A. SHEE, R.A.- Portraits of G.W. Taylor, Esq. M.P., of Mrs. Watson Taylor, Miss Tunno, Miss Campbell, Edw. Tunno Esq., J. Evelyn Esq., Mrs. Henry Elmes, and a Lady.
Bell's Weekly Messenger, 14 May 1821:
[Highlights of the Royal Academy exhibition:]
No. 63. Portrait of Miss Tunno- M.A. SHEE, R.A. Great taste is shown in the arrangement of this picture; it is full of interest, without the apearance of being crowded. The shadows in the head are not so heavy as are generally seen in the works of this master and transparency of colouring is attended to, which greatly improves the style and effect of this picture.
The Magazine of the Fine Arts, vol.1
[p111:] THE ROYAL ACADEMY ... Mr. Shee has been very successful in his whole-length of Miss Tunno, as well as in that of Mrs. Watson Taylor. In the former there is much ease, elegance, and unostentatious picturesque effect.
Patrick Craufurd Bruce (1748-1820), of Taplow Lodge, Bucks.
Author: David R. Fisher
Bruce prospered in Bombay, where he set up the mercantile house of Bruce, Fawcett & Company, in partnership with Henry Fawcett. He left India worth about £80,000 in 1794, bought a country residence at Taplow, which cost him £14,000, and a town house in Fitzroy Square
[A vignette engraving of Taplow Lodge based on artwork by Humphry Repton was published in 1796 in "The Polite Repository, or Pocket Companion"
alterations to Taplow Lodge were commissioned by Bruce in 1807, from Scottish architect Alexander McInnes]
By 1815 he faced serious financial problems as a result of the depression in the funds, the fall in the value of landed property and the failure of provincial banks which drew on his London house. In 1816, he sold his share in the East India agency in an effort to save the bank, but it closed its doors on 2 July. Although its debts of £507,506 were liquidated within six months, the failure left Bruce a broken man. He spent most of the last 18 months of his life in Scotland and Ireland and died 30 Mar. 1820. His affairs were found to be in disarray and Michael Bruce, now a radical in politics, saw little of the handsome inheritance he had been led to expect. Glenelg was eventually sold for £82,000, Taplow for only £6,000, and Bruce's widow and unmarried daughter died in poverty.
Newspaper advertisements indicate that Bruce's executors sold Taplow Lodge (with attached land revised down in April from 80 to 44 acres, possibly due to a partial private sale) by auction on 25 May 1821. Edward Rose Tunno appears to have been the auction purchaser.
Taplow Lodge around the beginning of the 20th century
Flora Herscheliana: Sir John and Lady Herschel at the Cape 1834 to 1838
Sir John Herschel & Lady Margaret Herschel (Edited by Brian Warner)
We cannot be certain how many plant species he had in the collection, but it must have been extensive both in species' numbers and in the sheer volume of material in cultivation. On one occasion he records ...
"I think I must have lost some thousands, and have now hardly wherewithal to make a consignment for Miss Timms & Brown the nurseryman" [The editor, correctly in my opinion, suggests that "Timms" is a misreading of "Tunno"]
The life of Sir Martin Archer Shee : president of the Royal Academy ... (vol. 2)
by his son Martin Archer Shee
Longmans, Green &c., London
[Shee revived the practice of inviting eminent persons to the Royal Academy's award ceremony, about which he wrote to Miss Tunno in 1835 as follows:]
Dec. 25th, 1835.
I am not surprised that you did not see any account of the academic proceedings in print. . . . . None of the press-gang, as Fanny Kemble calls them, are ever admitted on these occasions. An official statement of the names of the successful candidates is sent to the daily papers by the secretary, who merely mentions that, after the distribution, the President delivered an address. On the recent occasion, however, a flourishing account of the ceremonial appeared in the Morning Herald, which was written by a student of the Academy, who, it appears, has some access to that paper.
Your last letter contains three capital puns- a large proportion of wit for one epistle. Had you sparkled so brightly in a letter to Wilkie, he would have cudgelled his brains for a week to rival you. But such an effort would be quite hopeless on my part. My fancy begins to feel the frost of age. But the heart is not easily chilled to those we love; and the warmth you have excited there must glow while sense remains.
The Morning Post (London, England), Tuesday, March 22, 1836; pg. 
The following Subscriptions for the Misses OTTEY (in addition to those already advertised) are gratefully acknowledged:-
Miss Tunno - - £1
Miss H. Tunno - - £1
Miss E. Tunno - - £1
The Gardener's Magazine and Register of Rural and Domestic ...
[London Horticultural Show, medal to Mr Holland, Miss Tunno's gardener]
The life of Sir Martin Archer Shee : president of the Royal Academy ... (vol. 2)
by his son Martin Archer Shee
Longmans, Green &c., London
[Miss Tunno was on a trip to Europe in the summer of 1837, so Sir Martin sent her details of some recent events:]
London, 31st July, 1837.
We are here in all the agonies or ecstasies of a general election, the more exciting as it appears doubtful as to the result. I believe the king's death took place after your departure. Few sovereigns have been more generally lamented, or better deserved to be so ; for he was kind-hearted, and honestly desirous of consulting the good of his people.
The new reign, however, has begun prosperously; the queen has delighted everybody by her dignity, grace, and good sense. I had the honour of kissing her Majesty's hand at her first levee, the most crowded I ever witnessed, on presenting an address from the Royal Academy.
On Tuesday last I had the honour of conducting her Majesty through the exhibition. She was accompanied by the Duchess of Kent; and I confess I was gratified and surprised to see how completely she appeared the same unaffected little girl, as when you saw her at the Private View, easy, gracious, and graceful, without any studied assumption of majesty, or put-on air of importance. ...
[In 1837, the Royal Academy was under sustained attack in Parliament, centred on the question of whether such national institutions should charge for entry:]
Writing in the month of October, 1837, to Miss Tunno, who had recently returned from a visit to St. Petersburg, where, in common with all other English travellers who had been admitted within the range of the imperial amenities, she was much impressed by the grave dignity and apparent bienveillance with which the late Emperor Nicholas I. exercised the courtly and ceremonious functions of his exalted position, Sir Martin says:
"I suppose you can feel but little interest in the boisterous contentions of the constitutional anarchy which we dignify in this country by the name of political liberty,- after witnessing the tranquil calm of paternal authority under the mild sway of the magnificent Calmuck whose virtues and graces you have so eloquently described. You have become a convert to the old doctrine 'sub rege pio.' But what do you think of my being attacked as a rank conservative and anti-radical in consequence of the Letter to which you allude as having been mentioned to you by Mr. A___. If you had been in England, you would not have received your information on the subject at second hand.
At the earnest desire of some of my academic brethren, I was induced to fire a shot among the rabble assailants of that institution, and have consequently made myself a target for all the arrows of malignity, political and pictorial. But he who enjoys the post of honour ought not to shrink from the post of danger. The Letter is a small affair, but you shall have a copy by the first opportunity."
[Meanwhile, in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire]
The Cheltenham Looker-on, 2 Dec 1837; pg. 14
Miss Tunno, 3, Suffolk Square, to 2, Montpellier Spa Buildings
[SEE DIRECTORIES; Cheltenham entries refer to Augusta Tunno, unless otherwise stated]
Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard, 4 Aug 1838:
[Gloucester Assizes:] John Carrington, 24, charged with breaking open the dwelling-house of Miss Augusta Rose Tunno, at Cheltenham, on the night of the 18th of June, and stealing fr ee [sic] £5 notes, and other moneys, a quantity of wine, and sundry other articles, her property. It appeared from the evidence, that the prisoner had lived with the prosecutrix, and had only left her service about a week. On the night in question the house was left safe about eleven o'clock, and on the following morning at five, it was proved to have been broken open, and the articles mentioned in the indictment had been stolen; the prisoner was seen at night with a person named Butler (not in custody), and early on the morning of the 19th they both went to the house of a woman named Macdonald, with whom they left part of the stolen property; there was also a coat left by the burglars at Miss Tunno's house stuffed up the chimney, which was proved to belong to the prisoner. The Jury found him Guilty, and he was sentenced to fifteen years' transportation.
The Bath Chronicle, 9 Aug 1838; pg. 4
GLOUCESTER SUMMER ASSIZES
John Carrington, aged 24, was charged with burglariously breaking open the dwelling-house of Augusta Rose Tunno, at Cheltenham, and stealing therefrom two china ornaments and other articles, her property. Fifteen years' transportation.
The Bristol Mercury, 11 Aug 1838:
[ADDS:] Eliza Macdonald, for feloniously receiving the articles stolen, was admitted evidence for the prosecution.
The life of Sir Martin Archer Shee : president of the Royal Academy ... (vol. 2)
by his son Martin Archer Shee
Longmans, Green &c., London
Richmond, 2nd September, 1838.
You have been advised (according to the mercantile phrase) of our removal to Richmond. We have got a little tenement, under the name of Stanley Cottage, on the hill, just opposite the Star and Garter, the largest room of which is about eight feet square, but with the most beautiful and extensive prospect which this celebrated scene of cockney conviviality affords.
The weather has been most favourable to us. I trust you have been equally fortunate, and that you and your fair companions have been able to enjoy it without interruption or drawback. It must be a tempestuous season, indeed, that would interfere with the pleasures of the boys under your roof. I know myself how independent one feels, there, of all atmospheric influences, and can no more doubt of their enjoyment than of my own, in the same situation.
. . . . .
I find you have been cultivating vital Christianity in the puritanical pages of [name censored by the book's author]. I read a little of the book at Taplow Lodge, and quite enough to sicken me of its folly and fanaticism. One might be amused by the weakness of such self-satisfied bigots, if the mirth arising from their absurdities were not checked by the indignant feelings excited by their presumption, and the arrogant tone in which they at once condemn and commiserate the small portion of their fellow-creatures, who refuse to wrap themselves up in the same cloak of sanctimonious security.
[- and later that month, after the grand military review and Windsor Horticultural Society show, in the parkland adjoining Windsor Castle, on 18 September:]
Richmond Hill, 20th Sept. 1838.
MY DEAR MISS TUNNO, What do you think of our rencontre on Tuesday? Like a lightning flash the (to me) most agreeable of all aspects, appeared and vanished. I have not yet recovered the vexation, mortification, and even shame of suffering such an opportunity of exchanging a few words with you to be lost. But we passed each other with such a railroad rapidity, that before I could get down one of the glasses (for, as you will readily believe, they were all up), and make a deaf post-boy hear, your carriage was out of sight; and as I took it for granted you were on the wing for the review, I thought it hardly fair, for my gratification, to detain you, as the proceedings were about to commence when I left the Castle, and the delay might prevent your obtaining a favourable position for observation, as crowds were collecting from all quarters. After all, this is making out but a bad case ; and I feel that I ought not to have suffered you to escape me, but should have tried a race with Cole [AUTHOR'S NOTE: "Miss Tunno's coachman"], even though I might be indicted for endangering the lives of her Majesty's lieges on the highway.
[A lengthy explanation of Sir Martin's urgent oficial business with the Queen follows:]
I hope that both you and your fair companions have derived health and pleasure from your excursion; and though I myself could live between the wainscot and the wall through the year, like a house rat, I am convinced that change of air and scene is as salubrious as agreeable. In accordance with this doctrine, I am about to make a visit of a few days to Sir Robert Peel, at Drayton Manor.
Berkshire Chronicle (Reading, England), Saturday, September 08, 1838; pg. 1
PROPOSAL TO BUILD AND ENDOW A DISTRICT CHURCH, AND TO PROVIDE A RESIDENCE FOR THE CLERGYMAN, AT KNOWL HILL, BERKS.
Miss Tunno, Taplow Lodge .. .. £5
At some time between 1834 and 1839, Edward Tunno acquired a lease of Amport House, near Andover in Hampshire, which seems to have served as a family holiday home until Edward bought Warnford Park, nearer to the old Cobbett estate, in 1846.
117 - Royal Society
JH - Catalogue of the papers of Sir John Frederick William Herschel 1st Baronet Astronomer (1792 - 1871)
JH/A - CORRESPONDENCE OF SIR JOHN FREDERICK WILLIAM HERSCHEL
Title: From M. Tunno Amport, Andover
Description: Identification Mark: RS:HS 17.448
Title: From M. Tunno Amport, Andover
Description: Identification Mark: RS:HS 17.449
Victoria, Albert, and Mrs. Stevenson
Sarah Coles Stevenson (edited by Edward Boykin)
Rinehart & Company, Inc.
[Sarah was the wife of the US ambassador to the UK, Andrew Stevenson]
London June 12th 1840
My beloved Sisters, and Edward, & Sally
I must now tell you of some charming new acquaintances we have made a pleasant change from the worse to the best of God's creatures. About six weeks ago we dined at Lord & Lady Stanleys of Anderly [sic, for Alderley], (of whom I wrote you last autumn as having been very civil to us, &c,) there we met with a charming person, a Miss Tunno, with whom I became accidentally acquainted. She sat by Mr. Stevenson & I thought he neglected her, and after dinner, I endeavoured to atone for his want of attention, & somewhat struck too with her mild thoughtful countenance, I made up to her, & we entered into conversation, finding her intelligent & agreeable, I remained at her side almost the whole evening, and before we parted, she had given me a general invitation to visit her at her Villa near Windsor, she told me her Mother was an American, & she had been born in her mother's land, which had given her a kind feeling towards all of that country & therefore she was particularly pleased to have made my acquaintance, &c. Among other things by way of proving her birth-right, she said she was very fond of hominy- & thanks to Matt I had some, & told her I would send her a little parcel.
When she called upon me I happened to be at home & received her & ordered the hominy to be put into her carriage and by a singular coincidence when I called some days after to take leave of her, the wife of her only brother chanced to come in, & she asked leave to present her. This brought an invitation to dinner where we found all that wealth, taste & luxury could supply, and the most amiable persons in the world. Soon after this Miss Tunno left town for her country villa, but before doing so, she made me promise to go to her for a week at the time of the Ascot races. Then wrote, & fixed the 15th to the 20th and said she should send her carriage to meet us at the maiden-head-station [sic for Maidenhead Station, on the Great Western Railway, which had run services from London since 1838] about three miles from her house &c, &c.
June 23d Well, dear Lucy we have had the most delightful visit to the Tunno's and now I can tell you all about them. Mr. Stevenson and myself were to have set off on Monday the 15th but Alas ! for Mr. Rush ! my good husband found it impossible to get away that night, so he took me, with Mrs. Jeffs & James the footman, for both of whom I have a special liking, to the rail road, & put me in, I must confess I felt rather forlorn, as the servants were in a back car, and I sat waiting for the steam to put us in motion, & thinking, well, Mr. S. is snug at home by this time, when I looked up, & saw him standing with folded arms and a most lover like look gazing on me as if he was taking a last look. Will you believe, I was silly enough to shed a tear or two as the thought past through my mind of that last parting which come's to all of woman born, but the steam soon put all my sentiment to flight and away we went at a speed that soon brought the turrets of Windsor castle in view but owing to the many stopages we did not arrive untill an hour after our time, that is instead of one hour we were just two, and I found dear Miss Tunno in great trouble looking for me in every car.
She was in a handsome Barouche with liveried servants, &c, and a pony chaise for the luggage. From the wealth and splendour I had seen in her brothers house, I was prepared to see a comfortable respectable place, but I must confess I was astonished to find myself welcomed to one of the most beautiful villa's I have seen in England, the grounds highly ornamented & exhibiting the taste, as well as the opulence of the owner's.
I found there were three sisters (all single,) living together- and this place had been left to them by their mother with the means of keeping it up- and certainly there cannot be a better appointed establishment- my friend is the eldest of the family to whom all the others look up, as their head & superior. She is from her appearance between 50 & 60, tall in person with a touching expression of softness & pensiveness in her countenance which is occasionally kindled into a smile the sweeter & more winning from the previously grave aspect which it softens and subdues. There is a something in her manner that impressed me with an idea that some great grief had cast its shadow over her, but that submissive to the chastening of Heaven, it had only purified her from the dross of Earthly passions, and upon a more intimate acquaintance I find this is the case. I found Mr. & Mrs. Tunno had arrived before us, and three or four other guests. Miss Tunno asked me if I felt disposed for a little walk before dinner which proposal I gladly acceded to after being confined for two hours in a rail road car. The grounds were so beautiful and inviting I felt unwilling to leave them, shaded walks affording a hundred intricacies delicious to the eye and imagination which led us at last to a beautiful conservatory situated amidst flowers, & shrubs of rare beauty & fragrance. She pointed out several from her mother-land, my old friends and acquaintances, which I recognized with a thrill of delight. The evening passed most agreeably, music, chess, & conversation. They said they only wanted Mr. S. to complete their satisfaction but not so with me dear Lucy, for strange to tell, I thought incessantly of you and imagined how you would be delighted with these admirable and excellent persons, I could not resist the impulse I felt to speak of you to them, & told them how much they would like you. They are all highly cultivated, very literary in their taste & pursuits, Miss Tunno is an artist of the first order, her two drawing rooms are filled with her own painting, a likeness half or 3 quarters length of her Father & Mother, equal to Sir Martin Shee's who has painted a full length of herself, when in the meridian of her youth & beauty- besides many other paintings all beautifully executed. She speaks & writes, German, French, & Italian, & writes the most beautiful letter I ever read- her two sisters Marie, & Harriet, a little younger than herself, are also very accomplished & well read, but not equal to their sister. The next morning we looked out anxiously for Mr. S. but were obliged to set off without him, but about two miles from the house, we saw him coming under full sail, he & his man Cates in a little 4 wheeled vehicle he had got at the station, with much squeezing &c, we took him into the barouche, but having four horses to the carriage his weight did not make much difference. The day was beautiful the party all in good humour, & good spirits, and we soon got over the 14 miles and found ourselves on the Ascot race course, crowd like a D Room [sic, possibly abbreviating "Drawing Room"].
Fortunately, the Miss Tunno's had had the precaution to have another barouche fixed upon the course, in a good situation indeed the best, for which they paid some two or three pounds and a man to take care of it into this we got, & saw every thing which was to be seen. The Queen with all her attendants in 5 or 6 carriages and 4 passed close by us, so that we had the benefit of her smiles, & some of the young gentlemen of our party joined in the cheering, which on the second day was really deafening- in the intervals between the races we walked about, & saw the roulette tables, thimble-rig, &c, &c, and I threw the dice once for Mr. Tunno, & lost him 2/6- upon the whole we enjoyed ourselves very much, and had a very pleasant time.
At 2 the servants produced baskets filled with every delicacy to eat & drink with little baskets of strawberries for dessert. We got back at 5 o clock and had time to rest a little before dinner, to which some guests from the neighbourhood had been added. I however stole off by ½ past 10 oclock. The next day, Miss Tunno took us all in two carriages to visit Tress-mere, the celebrated seat of Ld & Lady Granville [sic, probably meaning Dropmore, seat of Lord & Lady Grenville, just north-east of Taplow Lodge], a most beautiful place a wilderness of sweets through which we wandered for two hours, finding something new & beautiful to attract us at every step. On the third day we went again to the races- the two days that the Queen was present, and enjoyed ourselves quite as much as on the first, with the additional pleasure of the days beginning with rain & wind & clearing off to a calm & beautiful sunshine just enough obscured to make it pleasant. On the fourth day we stayed at home, and as it rained the Miss Tunno's took us all over the house, each lady has her own bed room and sitting parlour to herself up stairs, through which they took us, and showed us all their comforts & conveniences and my friend invited me to remain with her in her sanctum. Then it was she spoke to me of her past trials the loss of dear friends by death, a neice whom she had adopted as a child a mother on whom she doated (again I thought of you,) and to whom she had dedicated all the best days of her life &c. &c. We left that little room, more bound to each other than ever.
The 1841 census return for Taplow Lodge lists Maria as head of the household, living off independent means, as were Harriett and Elizabeth [sic, for Eliza] Tunno, and Sarah Stevenson, who happened to be staying with them on census day, with Andrew (occupation: "American Minister"). There were 9 female and 4 male servants.
Berkshire Chronicle (Reading, England), Saturday, October 02, 1841; pg. 2
MAIDENHEAD HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.- The last show for the present year was held in the Bear Park, near the town, on Tuesday, the 21st instant
The following were among the prizes awarded:-
Specimen plant, a very fine plant of the Lisianthus Russellianus- Miss Tunno- gardener, Mr. Holland.
Reading Mercury, Oxford Gazette, Newbury Herald and Berks County Paper, etc (Reading, England), Saturday, June 25, 1842; pg. 3
HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.- The first Show of this Society, for the present year, was held in the Bear Park, adjoining this town, on Friday, the 17th inst.
The following prizes were awarded:- FIRST CLASS.
Roses- 1st prize, Miss Tunno; gardener, Mr. Holland.
Reading Mercury, 17 Sep 1842; pg. 2
MAIDENHEAD HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.- The second show of this society, for the present year, was held in the Town-hall, on Friday, the 9th instant, which, considering the unfavorable state of the weather, was well attended. ... there were some handsome specimen plants (among which was a beautiful plant of the Testudinaria Elephantopus, from Miss Tunno, of Taplow Lodge) ...
First Class.- ... Specimen plant, Testudinaria Elephantpus, and collection of fruit, 9 varieties, Miss Tunno; gardener, Mr. Holland. ...
Gardeners Chronicle & New Horticulturist
[Prizes awarded to Miss Tunno (i.e. Augusta) at horticultural shows in Cheltenham and Pittville]
[Also meanwhile ...]
The Post Office Directory for 1843 lists a Miss Tunno at 65 Upper Berkeley Street, London. The 1848 Annual Report of the Association for Promoting the Relief of Destitution in the Metropolis lists Miss C. Tunno of that address as a donor, so she would be Maria's sister Caroline (occasionally misnamed Catherine!). The same would probably apply to the Miss Tunno who was listed in Robson's London Directory for 1840 and the Royal Court Guide, and Fashionable Directory for 1842 at 14 Baker Street, off Portman Square in London.
The life of Sir Martin Archer Shee : president of the Royal Academy ... (vol. 2)
by his son Martin Archer Shee
Longmans, Green &c., London
[In later years, Sir Martin's health began to fail, and in 1846 his wife died. As his own death neared, he clung to his old friendships, as evidenced by this long letter to Miss Tunno:]
Brighton, Feb. 14, 1849.
Often during many months past have I most eagerly desired to write to you, my ever dear and excellent friend; often have I attempted to do so, and as often have I been obliged to desist, from the utter inability to carry my intention into effect. I will not say how much this has grieved me; for notwithstanding my long experience of the considerate kindness of your disposition, I have never been able to get rid of the impression that I must appear to you as ungrateful as neglectful, in suffering from any cause (short of the absolute suspension of all my rational faculties) an interruption, on my part, of the corrspondence with which you have so long indulged me, and from which I have derived such sincere gratification. Though not having quite so decided an excuse to plead for my silence, I think I may reasonably say that he may be considered as nearly approaching to that imbecile state, who finds himself unable to write, or read, talk, or even think on any subject, without bringing on himself an aggravation of all the inflictions of a complaint which admits of only partial alleviation, and yields to no remedy within the range of medical science. You may be well assured, my amiable friend, that not all the infirmities of age and disease, combined to test the endurance of man, could suffice to deter me from attempting, at least, to prove to you, by my own hand, that however the head may fail in its functions, the homage of the heart is still yours, in as warm a glow of affection and admiration, as your many excellent and attractive qualities ever excited in the earliest period of our acquaintance,- if other difficulties did not co-operate with my vertiginous enemy to counteract my intentions. You are aware, I believe, that I have been long under the surveillance of a domestic board of health, consisting of three fair guardians and divers assistant functionaries, generally considered as relieving officers; but, as far as I am concerned, as little effective in that capacity as the most callous official commemorated in the far-famed Andover Union. Now, my fair guardians,- though, as you well know, mild, gentle, and amiable in all the ordinary concerns of life,- where my health or comfort appears to be at all in question, are so energetic in expostulation, so absolute in exacting submission to prescribed rule, that, for peace as well as policy, I find it necessary to yield to their sway. Indeed they are so utterly unhappy, so alarmingly apprehensive of consequences, if they see a pen in my hand, or suspect any meditated infraction of dietary or other sanative regulations, that it would not only be ungracious but ungrateful to persist in any proceeding which must appear to them like a perverse opposition to just and rational remonstrance.
Thus, my dear friend, though a warm friend of liberty, am I reduced to passive obedience, under petticoat coercion and the resistless sway of female virtue. Even the wretched scribble which I with such difficulty write, and you I fear cannot read, has been perpetrated by stealth, -two or three lines at a time,- in those few snatches of opportunity and short relaxations of attention, which unavoidable circumstances will occasionally extort from the most anxious and untiring vigilance. But you have little reason to regret those obstructions which so effectually impede my epistolary efforts. I am no very amusing correspondent;- what can a letter from me now contain but details of dulness and disease,- records of suffering and sadness? Shut up as I am in my cave for three fourths of the year, visiting nobody, and admitting no visitors except the members of my own family; half blind from an affection of the optic nerve, hearing little at one ear, and nothing at the other; helpless in motion, and lethargic at rest;- my position may be considered as a kind of living death: I am defunct before my time, as to all the purposes and pleasures of social intercourse. I exist in a dreamy state of semi-conscious nonentity; without the energy to repress the excitement of active thought, or power to resort without injury to the slumbering resource of meditation. Pardon, my ever dear friend, this long trespass on your patience and your feelings, which only your indulgent kindness can excuse, and nothing but the ardent desire to rescue from the imputation of neglect or decay, the lasting attachment which your admirable qualities have inspired, could have induced me to inflict upon you.
I have suffered, my ever dear friend, the penalty of disobedience, by being rendered unable to continue, by my own pen, a letter which I fear you will find illegible ; for you will have perceived that my hand fails me even more than my head. This unlucky check, you may suppose, unavoidably disclosed my secret operations; and my sensitively apprehensive guardians are loud in eloquent reproof of my evasion of their authority. They even threaten a strait waistcoat, if I should make a second attempt to elude their vigilance. Thus circumstanced, I am compelled to entrust the remainder of my epistolary indiscretion to the agency of the fair and kind amanuensis, whose assistance has so often called forth my grateful acknowledgment; but, as I have adopted a more intelligible interpreter, I will also, for your sake, change my theme, and ask you what must be the preoccupation of mind of him who could scribble a long epistle to man, woman, or child, at a time like the present, without even an allusion to politics?
What do you think of the frightful 'antics played before high Heaven' by the Sovereign People, in what is called, par éminence, the civilised part of the world? There cannot surely be a dry eye amongst the angels if, as we are assured by poetical authority, they weep for the folly and frenzy of mankind. If I were at large again, and competent to any active prudential proceeding, I think I would rush to the Zoological Gardens, and request admission to the assemblage of wild beasts collected there, to avoid all community of intercourse with the wilder and more savage animals called men. A menagerie of monkeys is an asylum of sages, compared to the lunatic gatherings of patriots and politicians. If any sceptic should enquire for the locality of the infernal regions, he may be sure to find it in that hell upon earth,- that political Pandemonium,- a convention for the regeneration of man. What a pity that Providence, in its wisdom and mercy, did not constitute a world of women; to show that the virtues and charities of life are not inconsistent attributes of humanity; and to prove that faith, truth, justice, generosity, and common sense are yet to be found, at least in the better half of the human race.
Unwilling, my kind friend, that the close of my letter should continue the depressing tone which too much characterises its commencement, I have anxiously avoided a topic ever present to my mind, and which must darkly cloud the short remainder of my existence; but in a desire to relieve the painful feeling, which, I well know, has always prompted you to share in the afflictions of your friends, I am bound to tell you that Time has worked its usual effect, and that I can now speak and think of the lost companion of my life, without those convulsive bursts of emotion, on the first interview with any friend who was acquainted with her virtues. But though the stunning influence of sorrow has been somewhat assuaged, I still suffer under a solitude of the heart, which cannot be removed even by the constant attentions, and soothing endearments of the most affectionate family that ever shed a ray of comfort on the gloom of declining years and decaying faculties. But no more on this subject.
Australian Joint Copying Project
Correspondence and manuscripts of Owen Stanley, 1837-50
Owen Stanley (Cape York) to Miss Tunno, 5 Oct. 1849:
[describes] magnificent view of mountains of New Guinea in setting sun; quotes Sir Walter Scott.
The cottage gardener; or Amateur and cottager's ... (vol. 3, 1850)
A few years since we called, in the course of a gardening tour, on a much-esteemed old friend, Mr. Holland, gardener to the Misses Timms [i.e. Tunno] of Taplow Lodge, near Maidenhead. It was either at the end of April, or at the beginning of May; and Holand had a house of Black Hamburghs just ripe, certainly as fine as it was possible to imagine. A discussion immediately arose about inside and outside roots, and Holland astonished us by observing, that one half the house were from an inside border, and the other from an outside one, at the same time challenging as to the difference. And truly no difference could be perceived; all were equally fine. Mr. Holland, however, always covered the border outside with leaves and rakings of the woods in the autumn; we think he said about six inches in depth. Now, we do not suppose, for a moment, that any fermentation heat was imparted to the ground; such was not Mr. Holland's aim. It is obvious, however, that the non-conducting properties of leaves in a fresh state must be much greater than people commonly imagine. ...
The 1851 census return for Taplow Lodge lists Maria as head of the household (and describes her as a "Fundholder"). Also in residence were her sisters and fellow Fundholders, Harriet and Eliza, plus 8 female and 4 male household servants (including the coachman and the stable boy). Residing in separate households on the estate were gardeners Jasper Holland (with his wife and adult daughter) and Thomas Montague (with his wife, 3 young daughters and baby son), plus labourer George Clarke (with his wife and young son).
In Slater's Directory for 1852-3, Augusta Tunno's address is given as 15 Montpellier Terrace, Cheltenham.
Hampshire Chronicle, 10 Sep 1853:
On the 30th ult. at Taplow-lodge, Maria, eldest daughter of the late John Tunno Esq.
In her will, dated 6 July 1848, Maria left her share in the Taplow Lodge estate to her sisters Harriet Alicia Tidyman Tunno and Eliza Wright Tunno, during their lives (or to be disposed of by sale or exchange if appropriate), then after the death of the survivor, to her nephews Charles and Alfred Sartoris "as tenants in common and not as joint tenants" and their heirs. Similar arrangements were to apply to her share of the household and estate furniture and equipment. Her savings and investments (including those inherited from her father, but also, for exammple, shares in the Great Western Railway) were to be held in trust by Alfred and her brother Edward Rose Tunno, re-invested as appropriate, with the income split equally between Harriet and Eliza during their lifetimes, after which the funds were to be shared equally between Alfred and Charles.
£100 to her godchild Maria Tipping, daughter of [blank; probably= Thomas] Tipping of Davenport Hall, Cheshire
£100 to her godchild Catherine Stanley, daughter of the Bishop of Norwich [i.e., at the time the will was written, Edward Stanley, but he died on 6 September 1849]
£100 to her godchild Maria Newton, daughter of the late Stuart Newton, artist, now living at New York with her mother Mrs. Okey [=Oakey, following Sarah's widowhood in 1835 and marriage in 1840 to American merchant William Francis Oakey]
£300 to her friend Anna Martin Shee, daughter of Sir Martin Shee
£100 to her brother Edward Rose Tunno "to enable him to purchase a ring or some other memorial of me" "His means are so ample that it would be useless to make any further bequest in his favour."
To her "dear sister" Caroline she bequeathed her German books
To her "very dear sister" Augusta Rose Tunno £100, "with sincere affections".
£100 to the coachman, Joseph Cole, and his wife
£100 to the butler, William Hearnden, and his wife
£100 to the gardener, Jasper Holland
£50 to her maid, Caroline ?Bourle [born in Germany according to the 1851 census]
£100 to the lodge keeper, Mrs Talbot
Jewellery and trinkets to be divided between her sisters and her sister in law Caroline Tunno (except her gold repeater watch, which actually belonged to Edward and should be returned to him) with Edward as referee if they could not agree on a fair division
The residue of the estate was to be inherited by Alfred and his heirs
Alfred and Edward to be executors.
A codicil, dated 18 April 1849, added a legacy of £100 for her godchild Maria Herschel, daughter of her "valued friends" Sir John and Lady Herschel. Probate was granted to Alfred in London on 25 October 1853.
The 1856 Post Office Directory lists the Misses Tunno as resident at 12 Chesham Place, Belgrave Square, and a Miss Tunno (i.e. Caroline) at 55 Green Street, Grosvenor Square. Caroline remained at that address for the rest of her life, listed in the 1861 census as a "fundholder" with 3 female servants and 1 male in her household. She died in October 1881 (the other Caroline, Edward's widow, died in November 1885).
Harriet died in June 1864, but Eliza continued living in Chesham Place for the rest of her life, listed there in the 1871 census as a "Proprietress of Stocks" with 4 female servants and 1 male. She died in February 1883.
Augusta's life after her sister's death turns out to be a good deal more complicated than I at first assumed. Although she died only about a day's carriage-ride from Cheltenham, censuses and directories show that, by 1855, she was spending at least part of her time in south-east England (10 York Buildings, Hastings in the 1855 directory; 28 Warrior Square, St Leonard's-on-Sea in the 1859 directory; Montague House, Tunbridge Wells in the 1861 census- but as a visitor at the Sussex Hotel, Tunbridge Wells, in the 1871 census). Directories show her at 7 Royal Crescent in Bath from at least 1876, and she died there on 8 May 1885.