Autograph 'Copy Letter to the King from the Princess Olive', with petition, by Royal imposter Olivia Serres, signed by her 'Olive Princess of Cumberland'

Olivia Serres [née Wilmot] (1772-1834), English Royal imposter, claiming the title Princess Olive of Cumberrland [King William IV; Henry Frederick, Duke of Cumberland]
Publication details: 
Petition dated from London. February 1833.
SKU: 13557

23pp., foolscap 8vo. On six bifoliums of laid paper with 1833 Britannia watermark of Gilling & Alllford. Good, on lightly aged and worn paper. Folded into the customary packet, and docketed on reverse of last leaf 'Copy Letter to the King from the Princess Olive'. The document was written shortly before Serres' death, and does not appear to have been published. The first page is headed 'A letter to the Kings Most Excellent Majesty' and the document begins; 'Sire | The high opinion I wish to Cherish that your Majesty when truth claims your attention will do no wrong induces this public appeal to your justice for the cons[iderati]on and redress of my unprecedented wrongs which I have from Year to yr patiently & degradingly submitted to rather than lay open to the English Nation the true Cause of the desertion and neglect of my late Royal Parents Relatives'. The document ends with the petition (pp.21-23), headed: 'To the Kings Most Excellent Majesty The dutiful and humble petition of Olive Princess of Cumberland - London Feby 1833.' It begins: 'Sheweth | That your Petr altho she is the legitimate Daughter & Sole Heir of his late Royal Highness Henry Frederick, Duke off Cumberland by her Royal Highness Olive his first and lawful Wife is disposed of all her Birthrights except her rank & name of her late Royal Parents'. The petition claims that she 'lawfully proved in the prerogative Court in the month of June 1822' a 'Bequest of his late Majesty Geo[rg]e. the 3rd of £15,000'. Despite a recent book by Miles Macnair supporting Serre's claims, the case for her imposture is overwhelming, as her entry in the Oxford DNB demonstrates. See also the various reports of the matter (for example Ryves v. Duke of Wellington, Law Times, 31 October 1846).