“Quite by accident, my little ear fell against the keyhole. I can only imagine that I must have been paralysed with horror, for I inadvertently heard ... ghastly details of the dreadfully unsavoury affair..."
-- from the diary of Beatrix Bloxam (TBB/WHH)
The uncle of Beatrix Bloxam who had a sordid affair involving a hag and a sack of Bouncing Bulbs. As a child, Beatrix heard all the disturbing details of this affair and was traumatized for life as a result (TBB/WHH).
nobby = fashionable, stylish
"Nobby" is the diminutive form of the name "Norbert," often used as a nickname for someone with the surname "Clark."