Herbrand Arthur Russell, 11th Duke of Bedford

I found the following story in Marcus Scriven’s Splendour & Squalor: The Disgrace and Disintegration of Three Aristocratic Dynasties (2009), p.4.

Scriven’s book quite obviously discusses nineteenth- and twentieth-century aristocrats who lived life BIG, spent loads of money, had millions of mistresses, etc. etc. As an aside, Scrivens mentions Herbrand Arthur Russell, 11th Duke of Bedford (1858-1940).

Russell lived nowhere near as extravagantly as some of his contemporaries listed in the book. One might even say he was–comparatively–downright frugal. However, there were a few of his customs that were wildly divorced from reality.

Every day, he took a small cup of beef broth for a snack. This single cup was made from a nine-and-a-half-pound shin of beef, which was purchased specifically for this purpose, by the same kitchen maid, who was employed specifically to make his broth.

He hated the internal combustion engine and insisted on traveling by coach, even well into the age of the automobile.

He created a great deal of stir when traveling anywhere with his guests, insisting that all of their luggage be loaded into a separate vehicle, ‘it being considered unseemly that anyone should travel in too intimate proximity to their belongings‘ (4).



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