Page:A Bayard from Bengal.djvu/49

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AUTHOR'S NOTE ON ILLUSTRATION No. II.
(Frontispiece).


Had Mr Bernadhur Pahtridhji taken the very ordinary precaution to consult myself upon the etiquettes proscribed by smart society, I should infallibly have saved him from so shocking an exhibition of his ignorance.

As it is, I can only say that of course a highly cultivated Indian gentleman like Mr Bhosh would not dream of presenting himself at any upper-class entertainment—even a Baronet's—in so free and easy a garbage as a smoker's jacket. Were he to be guilty of such want of savoir faire he would inevitably incur some penalty kick or other.

Moreover, at these functions the hired musicians are never compelled to remove their shoes and stockings.

Another correction I hazard with rather less confidence, as I am unable at this moment to consult any authorised work on ducal head coverings. But I am practically certain that all the duchesses whom I have had the privilege to encounter at fashionable soirées wore coronets surmounted with golden balls, and of an altogether different pattern from the very humdrum concern which Mr Pahtridhji has thought proper to represent on the Duchess of Dickinson's cranium.

I fear I must again ask the critic's kind indulgence for an illustrator who has only too obviously never figured as the hailfellow well-met in aristocratic London saloons.

H. B. J.