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Divorce in High Life.

Following is a report of the Mar- quis of Blandford's divorce suit, some particulars of which were lately tele graphed to us :-The petition, heard on Saturday, February 4. was that of the Marchioness of Blandford for the

dissolution ol' the marriage hy reason of the cruelty, desertion, and adultery of her husband, the Marquis of Bland- ford. Ile filed an answer denying the charges, but practically there was no defence. Mr. Inclerwick, Q.C., and Mr. Searle appeared for the petitioner ; and Mr. C. Hall. Q.C., and Mr. Leh- mann, represented the respondent. In opening (he case Mr. Indorwick, Q.C., said the parties were married on November 8, 1SG9, and there were four children the issue, three girls and one boy. In the autumn 1874 the Marquis of Blandford bocame upon intimate terms with Lady Aylesford, and this led to great unpleasantness between lum and the petitioner. Lord Blandford neglected his home very much, and upon one occasion was guilty of an act. of personal violence towards his wife, this matter being referred to in the correspondence which afterwards passed between them. At the time her sister, Lady Lans- downe, was living with her. In 1875 Lord Blandford left his wife, stating that, he was going to the north for the purpose of hunting. He made ar- rangements that his wife should go over to Ireland to her father, the Duke of Abercorn, for the purpose of being confined. Ile told her that she need not trouble him in regard to the

birth of the child. From that time

until July, 1878, they never passed the nie ht together under the same roof, although they did see each other

under circumstances which would be mentioned. There were a number of

letters which passed between them, and subsequently it was arranged that they should live together again as the Marquis of Blandford had left the Countess of Aylesford, and was resid- ing at Paris by himself. As, however, the Earl of A3'lesford had instituted a suit for a divorce against his wife by reason of her adultery with the Mar- quis of Blandford, it was deemed ad- visable that they should not live together till the suit had been tried, there being- considerable correspon- dence on the subject. The Earl of Aylesford instituted his suit, and ob- tained a decree nixi; but the Queen's

Proctor intervened and the decree was rescinded, as it was found that Lord Aylesford had himself been guilty of adultery. It was also established that

there was no collusion between the

parties. Lord and Lady Blandford afterwards lived together at Oak Dene, Holmwood, near Dorking, they resid- ing there until April 20, 188 ', living happily enough for a short time. Lord Blandford, however, renewed his intimacy with Lady Aylesford, and

took a house for her at Farnham. Lady Blandford spoke to her husbaud on the subject, and he said it was per- fectly true that he intended again to live with Lady Aylesford, and that her family had insisted upon him mak- ing a settlement on the child he had by her. The matter being placed in the hands of Lord George Hamilton, the brother of the petitioner, Lady

Blandford determined to institute

these proceedings for a divorce, the desertion and adultery, which had been condoned, being revived by a fresh act of adultery. Martha Moore, lady's-maid to Lady Aylesford, deposed that Lord Blandford and Lady Ayles- ford lived together in Paris as man and wife, under the assumed name of " Mr. and Mrs. Spencer." A child was horn, which was registered as " Guy Bertrand." The Marchioness of Blandford deposed that she was married to the respondent on Novem- ber 8, 1809, and there were four children of the marriage. In 1873 a place called Oak Dene, Holmwood, near Dorking, was purchased, in l8"4 they were visiting Lord and Lady Aylesford at Packingron Hall,

in Warwickshire. Witness soon

noticed a considerable change in her

husband's conduct. Ile was absent a

good deal from home. In.June, 1875, he struck her a violent blow on her head, at which time she was enciente. They were having words about his conduct with Lady Aylesford when lier husband struck her on August 15. Ile left her for the purpose of going

to the north. At that time she had

arranged to rro to Ireland for her con filenient. Her father, the Duke of Abercorn, was then Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland. She asked him if she

should telegraph to him as to the birth of the child, and he told her not to do so. She did not again pass a night

with him under the same roof until 1878, when she met him at Blenheim. During their separation various letters passed between them, all of which she

handed to her solicitor. A deed of

separation was drawn up in 1878, securing to herself and child Oak

Deue. Afterwards a reconciliation

was agreed to, whereby they should live together after the divorce suit, which Lord Aylesford had instituted against his wife, was over, Her hus- band was the co-respondent in that

suit. She afterwards livel with her

husband at 40, Cadogan - square. Whilst in that house she took a port- rait of Lady Aylesford out of the frame and burnt it. Tie became very furious, and wrote her a letter, in "which he said, if the matter was not rectified, things would not remain as thev were. Soon after this she heard

that-lie had taken a house for himself and Lady Aylesford near Farnham. She spoke to him cn the subject, and her husband told her that Lady Ayles- ford had a child by him, and that he had been called upon to make provis-

ion for it. She afterwards consulted

her brother. Lord George Hamilton, and this petition was filed. Lady Lansdowne, sister to Lady Blandford, said that she had been upon very affectionate terms with the petitioner, who had repeatedly made complaints

in reference to Lord Blan I ford. IJcr

sister was very much distressed at lier husband's intimacy willi Lady Ayles- ford, and was very anxious that ho

should return to her and the children. Mr. lnderwick, Q.C., said that was all the evidence he had to oiler, lie submitted that there had been wilful

desertion for upwards- of two years,

from 187Ó down to time of the recon- ciliation in 18?8. At that time she was entitled to a divorce on the

ground of desertion and adultery, but she thought it advisable to return to her husband and resume cohabitation.

The adultery aud desertion, however, he submitted, were revived by Lord Blandford'« subsequent adultery with Lady Aylesford. His lordship, in giving his decision, said that in re- gard to the cruelty, irom his letter there was no doubt that the-respond cnt had been guilty of the act to

which re fere ne had been made. How-

ever, that being one act, which took place many years ago, it was probable

that if the claim for the dissolution of

the marriage had rested upon that alone, he (TIPÏ learned judge) would not have granted a decree. Now, in regard to the legal question, there was, no doubt, complete desertion on the respondent's part tor a period of two years, and adultery, which at the time fully entitled Lady Blandford to

a divorce But at the time she ab-

stained from instituting the suit, and made overtures for the purpose of winning her husband back again, but

was unsuccessful. She had condoned

his past offences on the condition that he sinned no more, and by his subse- quent conduct he had revived the adultery und desertion ; consequently* he (the learned judge) would pro- nounce a decree nisi, with costs. On the question of the custody of the children, it appeared they had been wards of court by the Duke of Marl- borough ; but, as it was pointed out,

the decree altered circumstances.

Eventually Lady Blandford was given the custody till further order.

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