Monday, May 25, 2009

The Impetuous Duchess

The Impetuous Duchess is #17 in the Bantam (US) series and was published in April 1975. Again, Francis Marshall creates 2 very different covers for this book. I've always found the Bantam one very lovely with the regency couple enjoying a stroll in the moonlight at a party. Note her hairdo, which is reminiscent of the 1960's! The Corgi (UK) cover has the couple fleeing someone and there is a French flag flying on the building.

The plot of this story is that the Duke of Warminster, while traveling in Scotland, accidently finds himself married to Jabina, because they lie and state that they are married to each other. See what happens when the duke who didn't want a wife, got the one he really needed!

In Scotland until the 1900's, you could marry by declaration which meant that if you stated that a person was your husband and he stated that you were his wife, in the presence of a witness, you were automatically married. These weddings were considered legal in England and many couples crossed the border to Gretna Green to marry in the face of angry relatives and to marry with haste. In England, you had to call banns, at your local church, for 3 consecutive weeks (which was the cheapest way to marry) or pay for a special license from a bishop, which was costly and out of reach for the common person.

This is one of 3 covers that has a figurine based on the Bantam cover art. You can sometimes find them on eBay. I believe they were made by the Franklin Mint.


  1. Jessica WilliamMay 5, 2011 at 2:17 PM

    This is definitely my no 1 favorite amongst all the Barbara Cartland books! I really love the whole thing about the Duke being almost totally cold, sometimes a bit rough, and not showing his affection for Jabina until the very last end, leaving her soooo frustrated but so inundated with happiness eventually.

    The whole story happening during France Revolution makes it has various adventurous moments, and a thoroughly enjoyable read. If I have moviemaking skills, I will definitely adapt this book to the silver screen!

    Havent found another Cartland's books as personally entertaining as this one. Do you have recommendations? :D thanks heaps!!!

  2. Hi Jessica,
    I liked this one too. If you enjoyed the escape from France plot, try "Free from Fear", "No Escape From Love" and: the best Barbara Cartland ever "Love Under Fire"!