Peter Riis, proprietor of The New Companion and a “shameless and hardened belletrist,” noticed the recent renaissance of hat-related posts here and sent me a link to a glorious advertisement he had posted a couple of years ago:
THE PRICE OF FRIENDSHIP.
“P ray observe me,” quoth Brummel, while sipping his wine,
“E ver banish that horrible skullcap of thine.
R eform altogether that villainous Tile,
R esembling a bread-pan in fashion and style.
I must cut ye, egad! tho’ feel hurt and all that–
N ever know any man in an infamous hat,
G et a chapeau of PERRING and place on thy sconce,
S uch a hat as can rivet my friendship at once.
“H e alone can supply, since old Dolman is dead,
A covering fit for a gentleman’s head.”
T hen repair to the Strand, only PERRING can show
S uch perfection of fashion, with prices so low.
8 to one are long odds, but I’ll bet it that I
5 hundred new shapes can from PERRING supply.
S uiting contour and feature, complexion and height,
T he young and adult, the stout and the slight,
R emember his Hats, though resisting the weather,
A re as light as the Plume of an eider-down feather,
N o where else can ONE GUINEA such Beavers command,
D on’t forget, PERRING’s HATS, then, of 85, STRAND.
–From Leigh Hunt’s London Journal, July 2, 1834.
Next time I am in London, I shall make sure to visit number 85, Strand, to acquire a chapeau for my sconce. If I am to be a Regency buck, I must endeavour to look the part.