PLATE XXIX

GLOVES OF CHARLES II

IMMEDIATELY after the crushing defeat of the Royalists at Worcester, on September 3rd, 1651, the young King escaped from the city with a few followers; but previous to starting His Majesty made some hurried changes in his costume, and, according to tradition, this was done in a house situated at the corner of New Street and the corn market. Mr. Allan Fea, in his admirable book entitled 7ize Flight of the King, says: “Charles had barely time to effect his escape by a back door as Corbett (a Parliamentary officer) entered by the front; and the story is strengthened by the fact that the King, in detailing his adventures to the Queen-mother and the Court, upon his safe arrival at the Louvre, described how he slipped out of Worcester, and “how near he was taken there, first in the fort and after in his chamber.” Some of the King’s apparel was long treasured in a house in the parish of Whiteladies, within the city of Worcester,* the gloves here illustrated being among the articles preserved. The gloves are made of thin brown leather, the seams of the fingers and thumb being covered with silver-wire thread, terminating on the back of the hand considerably beyond the knuckles, thus giving a false idea of the length of the fingers. The gauntlets are also trimmed with silver stitching ; and white spangled silver lace, sewn on to a band of pale blue silk, gives a finish to the whole. The gauntlets are split open some 5 inches at the sides, and are retained in position by broad bands of blue ribbed silk. The total length of the gloves, from the tip of the middle finger to the point of the lace, is 14. inches.

In the possession of A. Clark-Kennedy, Esqr.


* At the Whiteladies, in the Tything, are the remains of a nunnery, hence the name.