Thursday, February 2, 2012

Love Lost

We've been continuing with the highly interesting documentary series, A History of Britain by Simon Schama.  Last night we covered Queen Victoria and the Victorian era, including the works of Elizabeth Gaskell, one of my new favorite authors (insert sigh)...that's subject matter for another post.

The documentary included a fairly good glimpse into the personal life of Queen Victoria and her hubby Prince Albert.  There are the usual interesting tidbits, such as the fact that protocol required her to propose to him.  To my surprise though, I found their relationship really touching.  There was so much mutual respect and affection, something that has been extremely rare when it comes to the royals we've covered so far.

Here's a painting of Victoria and Albert and the first five of their nine children.

What was most touching to me was the depth of Queen Victoria's grief after Albert's passing.  She wore black for the rest of her life and rarely left London.  She laid out his shaving items every morning, as well as a clean towel and clothes for him every day.  She slept with his nightgown beside her, and even requested that it be put in her coffin with her.  When an artist made the cast of Prince Albert after his death, she had one made of herself as well, so they would be remembered together always.  It was almost as if she died with him that day.

There were so many political accomplishments and improvements made during her reign, but isn't it interesting that when you think of Victoria as a woman, you almost always think of Albert as well?  

There is nothing in life so fulfilling as a marriage that is successful!


  1. What great love. It is a great gift to be treasured.

  2. I've often thought that this marriage was unusual for the royals. We enjoyed studying it, too. I remember that the German habit of Christmas trees and Christmas cards came from Prince Albert's influence. Stranger than Fiction!