Under the Hanoverians the monarchy had fallen into disrepute, torn apart by feuding and scandal. When she was a teenager, Beatrice became Queen Victoria’s personal assistant, helping her with whatever she needed. In this podcast Jane Ridley, biographer of Queen Victoria, guides us around Osborne on the Isle of Wight where the queen and Prince Albert used to reside: The Prince of Wales, however, was anything but chaste. a pre-selected message and a cool badge. He and Victoria were united in the desire that they should not just be a model, loving and happy family, but that they would also set a moral example that would redefine royalty and be the foundation of a dynasty that would stretch across Europe, bringing peace and harmony to the fractious continent. A fraught family life was perhaps unsurprising, given the couple’s own experiences. . Thanks for contacting us. If you subscribe to BBC History Magazine Print or Digital Editions then you can unlock 10 years’ worth of archived history material fully searchable by Topic, Location, Period and Person. September 28, 2019 | 1:29pm | Updated September 28, 2019 | 1:29pm. Even Bertie, a libertine and prince of pleasure, was as Edward VII a very successful king whose easy charm and diplomatic skills ensured the continuing popularity of the British royal family and brought Britain closer to France on the eve of the catastrophe of the First World War. Queen Victoria’s grief was so great that it would dominate her family and the nation for decades to come. The role meant that, much to his disappointment, he had to leave behind his work in the Navy. Despite fears for his health, Queen Victoria allowed Leopold to attend Oxford University, where he studied various subjects, including art and literature. Your Ad Choices In a changing world it was crucial that this be portrayed both as a worthwhile diplomatic alliance (which it was), and a love match. The couple settled together in London, where they had five children – Alfred, Marie, Victoria Melita, Alexandra and Beatrice. The Victorian public, in an era of pious rectitude, demanded a pure marriage in which the heir to the throne appeared to be virtuous and chaste. Victoria was at first furious at the thought of losing her precious Baby, but eventually gave her consent. “Our little boy is a wonderfully strong and large child,” she wrote proudly. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Google Podcasts. Bertie apologised, Albert forgave and then returned to Windsor wet through, racked with pain in his legs and suffering from fever. Beatrice herself lived a long life. On March 27 1884, Leopold fell down some stairs whilst in the town of Cannes in France. Enter your email address now to receive news, features, podcasts and more, Thanks for signing up to receive our royal newsletter, Register to HistoryExtra now to manage your newsletter preferences, By entering your details, you are agreeing to HistoryExtra's terms and conditions. From the beginning his relationship with his first child, Vicky, went well. Like all parents before and after, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert learned that children have an extraordinary ability to perplex, frustrate and amaze at their individuality and their obstinate refusal to turn into little paragons. Queen Victoria’s reign from 1837 to 1901 was unusually prosperous and peaceful. Who were Queen Victoria’s children? It was essential for them also that they were seen to be doing so. Terms of Use Certainly her own children, in the main, turned out well enough despite the untimely death of their father and the failure of his plan. Albert’s upbringing in Germany had been overshadowed by the breakdown of his parents’ marriage. In this she was generally successful, though she and the Prince of Wales gave each other a wide berth. As well as haemophilia, poor Leopold suffered from a condition called epilepsy. She had grown up secluded at Kensington Palace under the control of her domineering mother, the Duchess of Kent. As the historian Miranda Carter says: “It’s as if Albert and Victoria are trying to reach out to their middle class subjects and say, ‘look, we are like you, trust us’.”. Victoria, by contrast, was far more distant and guarded. She pursued her love of art, too, and in 1893 completed her most famous art work – a statue of Queen Victoria which stands at Kensington Palace. Victoria, too, had much to react against. They enjoyed a wedding at Windsor Castle, and went on to raise three children, called Margaret, Arthur and Patricia. His wife Helena lived on another 38 years and raised Charles Edward and their daughter Alice. He expected the same of his children – and more. Albert’s plan for the heir to the throne of the greatest empire the world had ever seen turned out a complete failure. Victoria spent the rest of her life in mourning and retired to Schloss Friedrichshof, a castle she had built in memory of Frederick. In 1860 he arranged the key dynastic marriage of the Prince of Wales to Princess Alexandra of Denmark. But things changed when Princess Beatrice fell in love with Prince Henry of Battenberg, and asked her mother for permission to marry him. Yet at the same time these youngsters were expected to be model children, utterly obedient to their parents. At just fourteen, Alfred joined the Royal Navy – and he proved to have a great set of sea legs! As youngster, she was a tough little girl who stood up for herself against her older siblings. The eldest child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, little Victoria – or … The first son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, little Bertie was first in line to the throne. Father and son went for a long walk in the rain. He died 16 January 1942, aged 91. Not so. They were both the product of unhappy childhoods. He clasped me in his arms, and we kissed each other again and again!”, Still, as she informed her eldest daughter Vicky in 1859, following her own marriage, she had a horror of having children and “would rather have none.”, Perhaps realizing that this would be a detriment to the UK monarchy she at least hoped (without success) to avoid a large family, telling her uncle King Leopold of Belgium in 1840, “I think you will see with me the great inconvenience a large family would be to us all.”. In 1872, she helped set up a charity called Girl’s Day School Trust, which provided education for girls whose parents couldn’t afford school fees. The result was nine children born between 1840 and 1857. “An ugly baby is a very nasty object,” she protested, “the prettiest are frightful when undressed… as long as they have their big body and little limbs and that terrible froglike action”. But his parents were quick to fix that, and put him on a strict education regime to ensure he was prepared to become King of England in the future! Lady Lyttleton, a governess, remembered seeing him playing with her: “Albert tossed and romped with her, making her laugh and crow and kick heartily”. Her only problem was she had nine children. In 1873, tragedy struck when Alice’s youngest son Friedrich, known as ‘Frittie’, died after falling from a window, leaving Alice completely devastated. And of course she blamed her eldest son Bertie for her beloved’s death. Did you know that, with her husband Prince Albert, Queen Victoria raised nine youngsters? You will shortly receive a receipt for your purchase via email. Nor did Victoria necessarily like babies. As a young boy, he was rather mischievous and quite the trouble maker! According to the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, there were five maternal deaths for every 1,000 births in England from 1800-1850. This is inexplicable and very annoying!”. It was Albert, the intellectual, who was responsible for shaping and modernising the royal family in the 19th century; his influence would last well into the next. Then, on 18 March 1848 , came little Louise – officially Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll. In 1860 he compared himself to a donkey on a treadmill, complaining: “He, too, would rather munch thistles in the castle moat. Please enter your number below. Do Not Sell My Personal Information, Your California Privacy Rights Victoria failed to empathise with her husband. However, their marriage was short lived…. The oldest of Victoria's children was Princess Victoria, the Princess Royal… Arthur grew up to become a military man. 156,069, This story has been shared 81,607 times. He was a new type of father, ahead of his time, with a hands-on approach to child rearing. Learn about the life of England’s last Tudor Queen…, From inventing a new dog breed to publishing her first Instagram post, discover our favourite facts about the Queen…, NG KiDS travels back in time to meet Her Majesty, Queen Victoria…. She idolised him to the children, telling them “none of you can ever be proud enough of being the child of such a father who has not his equal in this world”.

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