Author Topic: George and Mrs Anthony Hope ...  (Read 179 times)

Andrew

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George and Mrs Anthony Hope ...
« on: September 13, 2019, 11:42:22 AM »
You may remember that during Barrie's lavish holiday at Amhuinnsuidh Castle in the Outer Hebrides in the summer of 1912, George took a shine to the wife of the writer Sir Anthony Hope, aka Betty Hawkins. Peter speculated in his Morgue, "not that their dalliance amounted to anything ..."  but George's great friend Sir Roger Chance told us a different story when we visited him in 1976. I just found the tape, and will upload it by and by, but for the moment you can savour a bit of tittle-tattle by searching for "George Anthony Hope" in the database ...
« Last Edit: September 19, 2019, 10:10:21 AM by Brutus »

mb0521

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Re: George and Mrs Anthony Hope ...
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2019, 09:46:34 AM »
Good for him! If anything did happen do you think Barrie would have known and if so how would he have reacted?

Andrew

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Re: George and Mrs Anthony Hope ...
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2019, 08:46:21 AM »
Peter puts it better than I could in his Morgue:

"George (aged 19) was much intrigued by Betty Hawkins, and I think this was his first [...] experience of the delights of a flirtation with an attractive femme du monde. I also doubt whether Betty Hawkins ever had a more attractive adolescent to play around with. They enjoyed themselves quite a lot, sheltering from the eternal rain in the fishing-huts by the side of those lonely romantic lochs. She was very easy on the eye, and American, which perhaps accounts for the circumstance, rare enough in those far off days, that occasional nips of whisky fed the flames of dalliance. On these occasions George forcibly taught me the elements of tact, i.e. the necessity of making myself scarce, and I envied from afar, being just at the stage when poor J.M.B. had had to give me, by the banks of the burn, a small talking to for indulging at Eton in what my tutor euphemistically termed water-closet talk. He very nearly penetrated my juvenile defences by telling me it had always been his view that a man without some element of coarseness in his nature was not a whole man, which must have disconcerted me, coming from him. But I don't think he knew what was afoot between George and Betty: not that it amounted to anything."

Peter later speculated that Barrie might have even set George up with the French music-hall phenomenon, Gaby Deslys (check her out on Wikipedia) as a farewell present before George set off for the Western Front:

"Did George, during those last few hours of freedom, have anything more than just a mild flirtation with Gaby? I like to think so. Both were charmers, and it would have been a good finale. It is my belief that J.M.B., though so insulated himself (in a sense) from the flesh and the Devil, had the perception and imagination and tolerance and sense of the fitness of things to smile on such a little piece of naughtiness, in the circumstances and even pave the way for it. I have no evidence one way or the other, [...] but I will leave the theory in, because I think it a charming one, which George would have appreciated. And you never know. J.M.B. had his moments of profound insight and wisdom as well as his practically limitless generosity. And he loved George with an exceeding great love.

Re George and Betty Hawkins, Nico wrote to me:

"George and Betty Hope/Hawkins at Amhuinnsuidh: Yes indeed! I'm sure she also took Jack to bed with her, though not at Amhuinnsuidh as he wasn't there. But she was clearly captivated by these two virile and very attractive young men who doubtless could produce a thing or two that "Oh for an hour of Herod!" Anthony Hope had allowed to decrease in Ruritania."


mb0521

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Re: George and Mrs Anthony Hope ...
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2019, 07:45:07 AM »
Knowing how Barrie certainly would not have wanted a scandal (e.g. his divorce being one example) wouldn’t the possibility of all these sexual dalliances have deterred Barrie from arranging these ‘meetings’ for Jack and George. Surely, he didn’t want a scandal for them too.