Serving Victoria: Life in the Royal Household

By Kate Hubbard

During her sixty-three-year reign, Queen Victoria accrued round herself a family devoted to her carrier. For a few, royal employment was once the defining event in their lives; for others it got here as an unwelcome responsibility or as a prelude to bigger issues. Serving Victoria follows the lives of six contributors of her family, from the governess to the royal childrens, from her maid of  honor to her chaplain and her own physician.

Drawing on their letters and diaries—many hitherto unpublished—Serving Victoria deals a different perception into the Victorian courtroom, with all its frustrations and absurdities, in addition to the Queen herself, sitting squarely at its middle. obvious throughout the eyes of her family as she traveled between Windsor, Osborne, and Balmoral, and to the French and Belgian courts, Victoria emerges as extra weak, extra emotional, extra egocentric, extra comical, than the austere determine depicted in her well-known images. We see a lady who used to be susceptible to suits of giggles, who wept simply and sometimes, who wolfed her foodstuff and shrank from disagreement yet insisted on controlling the lives of these round her. We witness her remarkable and debilitating grief on the dying of her husband, Albert, and her sympathy towards the tragedies that her household.

Witty, astute, and relocating, Serving Victoria is an ideal foil to the pomp and circumstance—and prudery and conservatism—associated with Victoria's reign, and offers an unforgettable glimpse of what it intended to serve the Queen.

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To determine this nice perception of my loved husband’s nice and strong brain that is continuously labouring for the great of others, to work out this nice concept and paintings topped with positive good fortune regardless of problems and competition of each that you can think of variety and type – and of each attempt which jealousy and calumny may well hotel to – to reason its failure, has been a huge happiness to us either. ’ on the grounds that leaving courtroom, Sarah Lyttelton had arrange domestic in London, in Stratton highway, with Caroline and Kitty, whereas making widespread visits to the rectory at Hawarden, and to Hagley, the place as ‘General Granny’ she dodged cricket balls and taught her grandchildren French. To Caroline, she was once much more frank just about the Exhibition, admitting that she had ‘no enthusiasm for the alternate and a part of it and imagine that passage in Prince Albert’s speech a bit of mere German philosophy, valueless at best’, yet total it appeared to her a wholly useful company, reaping rewards those that deserved it and a wonderful vindication of the entire Prince believed in and had labored so tough for within the face of a lot doom-mongering and mockery. She couldn’t aid yet proportion the Queen’s excitement ‘on witnessing the entire and unexpectable luck of her husband’s nice project, which needs to redound to his honour (everywhere other than in London) and shew what he's made up of, as to expertise at the very least . . . i think it really is universally sneered at and abominated via the beau monde and may simply raise the contempt for the Prince between all nice folks. yet so might whatever he does. ’ greater than six million humans (a 3rd of the whole inhabitants of england) visited the Exhibition. Many, like Her Majesty, went greater than as soon as. Charlotte Canning observed the royal relatives on a number of visits because it drew to an in depth in October. at the fifteenth, she was once with the Queen as Her Majesty made a few last-minute sketches. the following day she attended the remaining rite, the place the Prince learn a record and expressed thank you, the Bishop of London provided a number of prayers, and ‘so the Exhibition ended’. the nice Exhibition proclaimed peace, prosperity and Britain’s prestige as a champion of loose exchange and an commercial and imperial energy. It stood too as a monument to Albert’s imaginative and prescient and resolution. 3 years later, Britain used to be at battle in Europe for the 1st time in 40 years, and Albert was once dubbed a traitor. faith, nationalism and imperialism all performed their half within the Crimean warfare. within the Holy Lands, long-standing disputes focused on Latin priests (supported via France) and Orthodox (backed by means of Russia) jostling for keep an eye on of key shrines, whereas during the early 1850s hostilities rumbled among Russia and Turkey over the query of the security of the colossal numbers of Greek Orthodox Christians in the Ottoman Empire. In June 1853, Russia occupied the Turkish principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia, at the pretext of shielding the rights in their Christian topics. In October, Turkey declared conflict on Russia, and a month later the Russian fleet destroyed the Turkish army at Sinope.

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