Eek! It's Wednesday already ?!? How did that happen ?
So this week I started reading No Place for a Lady by Barbara Hodgson and got curious about conveyances. There are several names in this book for the vehicles used and I wanted to try to sort them out.
Diligence - four wheeled coach that seats six to eight passengers. The term is apparently French and the 19th-century ones came in three sizes, La petite diligence, La grande diligence and L'impériale.
A diligence of Gothard
© Swiss National museum, Zurich
Post-chaise - a lighter four wheeled, closed-bodied carriage that carried two to four passengers and was drawn by two or four horses. This is distinct from a chaise which is a pleasure vehicle typically with a fold-down top and which only carried one or two people. These coaches could have a driver (coachman) mounted on the vehicle or a postillion (as in this picture). A postilion rider was the driver of a coach, or post chaise, mounted on one of the horses. Postilion riders normally rode the left (or "near") horse of a pair because horses usually were trained only to be mounted from the left.
Char-à-banc - an open-topped (or with a light shade) four-wheeler with two or more rows of crosswise bench seats, plus a slightly lower rear seat for a groom, and most also had a slatted trunk for luggage. (This term carried over from horse drawn carriages into early motor coaches.)
Well - this is just the first three but I have to prep a lecture, so I will leave it here - I plan to pick this up again with some more though.