home in the Scottish Highlands where her family often went for
extended stays. The Queen adored Scottish ways and the romantic
beauty of the Highlands, and Balmoral reflected her penchant for
a more rustic way of living than most previous British monarchs
had ever shown.
Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield
- Conservative Prime Minister of Britain in 1868 and
again from 1874 to 1980. A staunch imperialist and also notably
open to democratic reforms in the government, Disraeli was Victoria's
favorite prime minister. He pushed through the bill that made her
Empress of India in 1876.
Edward, or Albert Edward, Prince of Wales
- Born in late 1841, the eldest son of Victoria, and
heir to the throne. He was crowned King of Great Britain and Ireland
in 1901 upon his mother's death. As a young man he continually
disappointed his mother's hopes, dropping out of college and showing
little talent or judgment. He lived a fast, cosmopolitan life with
gamblers, actresses, and similar people who Victoria disdained
servant of Victoria's who, in the mid-1860s, also became the Queen's
closest friend and confidante. Their relationship sparked many
rumors and scandalized many in Britain, though it is unknown whether
the relationship was sexual in nature. Brown's death in 1883 affected
the Queen deeply, and she mourned him in a manner similar to the
way she mourned her late husband, Prince Albert.
Leopold, King of the Belgians
- Uncle and father figure of Queen Victoria, brother
of Victoire of Saxe- Coburg. Leopold corresponded regularly with
his royal niece, who depended upon his wise counsel in matters
of state for many years.
Melbourne, William Lamb, Second Viscount
- Victoria's first Prime Minister, member of the Whig
party. Lord Melbourne was the Queen's most important adviser during
her first several years on the throne. He was also her political
mentor, teaching her many of the ins and outs of royal government
while she was young and inexperienced as a ruler.
on the Isle of Wight in 1845, the Queen's favorite retreat home
which she called "a place of our own" when writing to Prince Albert.
It was modest for a royal residence, reflecting Victoria's taste
for simplicity rather than grandeur.
Otto Von Bismarck
- Prussian Chancellor and chief architect of the new,
united German Empire constituted in 1870. Bismarck was one of the
chief figures in European politics in the nineteenth century. Victoria's
relations on the whole with Germany, the land of her mother's and
husband's birth, were very friendly.
Palmerston, Henry John Temple, Third Viscount
- Foreign Secretary of Britain early in Victoria's
reign and Whig Prime Minister in the mid-1850s and early 1860s.
He was the chief architect of Victorian foreign policy, as well
as a firm moderating influence on the liberal politics of his fellow
Whigs in Parliament, before his death in 1865 .
Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha
- Husband and Prince Consort of Queen Victoria, and
father of her nine children. He was German by birth, a cousin of
the Queen's, and married her in 1840. Victoria and Albert were
devoted to eachother, and Albert was her most important adviser
on all matters until his untimely death at the age of forty-two
in 1861. He was remembered especially for organizing the Great
Exhibition of 1850.
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent
- Fourth son of King George III of Great Britain and
Ireland, father of Queen Victoria. He led a disreputable life before
marrying Victoire of Saxe-Coburg in 1818, and died only seven months
after the birth of his only daughter, who was destined to be Queen.
Princess Royal Victoria
- Born in late 1840, the firstborn of Victoria's nine
children, and future bride of the German Emperor Friedrich III.
Pretty, intelligent, and talented, she was very close to her mother
and she may have been the Queen's favorite child, often outshining her
younger brother Edward.
Sir John Conroy
- Comptroller of Victoire of Saxe-Coburg's household
at the palace of Kensington while the future Queen Victoria was
growing up. He was alleged to be a lover of Victoire's, though
the rumors were never substantiated. he is most known for attempting
to make himself young Victoria's regent, or power behind the scenes,
during her teen years, involving the household at Kensington in
several feuds with that of King William IV's court. Victoria stood
fast against his attempts to influence her, and shook off his power quickly
upon succession to the throne.
Victoire of Saxe-Coburg
- German princess, widow of Prince Charles Emich of
Leiningen, later Duchess of Kent, and mother of Queen Victoria.
She married Prince Edward, Duke of Kent in 1818, giving birth to Victoria,
her third and last child in May 1819. Her relationship with her
royal daughter was rocky; after Victoria's accession to the throne,
Victoire exercised little if any influence over the young queen.
April 29, 1819, Queen of Great Britain and Ireland from 1837 to
her death in 1901. Named Empress of India in 1876, she came to
transform the institution of the British monarchy into its modern form,
came to be beloved by her people in the later decades of her reign,
and was nicknamed the "Grandmother of Europe," in part because
her nine children had married into many European royal families.
- Great Liberal Prime Minister from 1868 to 1874 and
again from 1880 to 1885. Very democratic in his politics, he was
responsible for the Third Reform Bill and also made many political
enemies for supporting Home Rule for Ireland. Victoria disliked him
with a passion.