There has been a fabulous drama series on UK TV recently, about the early years of the life of Queen Victoria. I’ve always been fascinated by this period in history, so I’ve discovered some facts about Queen Victoria, to share with you.
In the TV series, Victoria is played by the actress Jenna Coleman, who has been criticised for being too beautiful, and unlike how the actual queen was portrayed in photos and paintings!
Victoria was christened ‘Alexandrina Victoria’. However, from birth she was formally addressed as Her Royal Highness Princess Victoria of Kent.
Victoria’s first language was German. At three years old she learnt to speak English and French. Later she learnt to speak Hindustani because she was ruler of India as well.
Queen Victoria came to the throne when she was only 18 years of age on June 20, 1837 upon the death of her uncle William IV who had no legitimate children. Her coronation was a year later on 28 June 1838.
At the age of 21, Victoria married her cousin, Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha, a German Prince. They married on the 10th February 1840 at the Chapel Royal in St. James’s Palace.
Victoria had nine children, 40 grand-children and 37 great-grandchildren.
Her husband Albert died in 1861 at the young age of 42. She mourned his death for almost 10 years. For the rest of her reign she wore black.
Queen Victoria had many homes. She lived in Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Osborne House (Isle of Wight) and Balmoral Castle. Queen Victoria was the first monarch to live in Buckingham Palace.
Whilst Victoria was Queen, Britain became the most powerful country in the world, with the largest empire that had ever existed, ruling a quarter of the world’s population.
The number of people living in Britain more than doubled, causing a huge demand for food, clothes and housing.
Factories and machines were built to meet this demand and new towns grew up, changing the landscape and the ways people lived and worked.
Railways, originally built to transport goods, meant people could travel easily around the country for the first time.
Queen Victoria died on 22 January, 1901 at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight. She was 81.
Victoria was once the longest serving British monarch, ruling for over 63 years, but her reign has now been exceeded by Elizabeth II who has ruled for over 64 years so far.
Queen Victoria was succeeded by her eldest son, Albert Edward, Prince of Wales. He became King Edward VII.
What is your favourite period in history?