Queen Victoria: Life and Reign

staff_reporter Member Photo

Clipped by staff_reporter

Queen Victoria: Life and Reign - THE TIMES, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 23. 1901. warn...
THE TIMES, WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 23. 1901. warn lti - inrr slut Tk r t tk. rl f VICTORIA :"k. likely to have chUdren ; but the QUEEN LIFE AND REIGN. To writ the life of Queen Victoria U to relate th history of Great Britain daring a period of at evtut, manifold changes, nd unexampled ntiooI prosperity. Xo reign in tho annals of nv country can compare with that of tho late Sovereign ; end to her, whose per onal influence k.1ned in largo racnuro to make thi epoch one jvt will bo ever gratefully remembered, we owe oft than to any of our former Kings and Queens. In reckoning the extent ol onr dcit towards ner, hive onlv to think how differently tho conn j pMie sSairs might have moved during tho last aixtv - four rears nau icxona ooen oincr man sue vat She might Lavo oercd, as she did, all aanlr virtues, and yet not have lon good Oueen : she might have been a Sovereign of com - asnding firmness, with high aims and generous j - nnlsc.. without being a good woman, in which cane her subject would haTe lost tho ennobling example of her private life. Again, she might Itrt been tvith an able 1 Yin cess and a virtuous rorasn, confining the virility of Elizabeth with tie gentle purity of Jane Grey, and have, failed, nerertheless, in the special qualities that were necessary to male her a successful and popular over this reculiarlv - constitutcd nation Duke of Clarence had been married on the samogbetter education than that which was given her day as the Duke of Kent to the Princess Adelaide of Saxo - Meiningeu, and he waa to hare two daughters, loth f whom, however, died during infancy. The question as to what name the Duke of Kent's child should boar waa not settled without bickerings. The Duko of Kent wished her to In christened Elizabeth, after England's greatest Quoon ; but tho Tsar Alexander I. had promised to stand sponsor, and his Ambassador in London, .Prince Lioven, made a great fuss to get the child named Alexandria. On the other hand, tho I'rinco Jtegent desired that his niece brought up in view of her mighty destiniea ; and! When thm eoond of her children died she had every sailor's heart to have a girl Queen to figbtiJohn Russell was Home Secretary, Lord.i'lair - yec the m nee is could not nave received a under Prince Leopold's direction, and which tended to mako her limply an accomplished lady. Her uncle considered that she cught to be kept as long as possible from the knowledgo of her position, which might raise a large growth of pride or vanity in her and make her unmanageable unmanageable ; so Victoria was 12 years old before she knew that she was to wear a crown. Kir Walter Scott, having dined with the Duchess of Kent in 1820, made the following entry in his diary : I was very kindly received by Prince Leopold and presented to the little PrineeM Victoria lot should bo called GKfritnt. In tho end theHb'lr apparent to the Crown as things now stand. tvefient yielded to tho Tsar, but said that as theB u" '",1,a7 miu - n.meof George could stand second to none other ,Q - " .T'r 0' .1 that of l.eorgiana should not bo conferred at all.gthat if W8 c M di , th ,itUe betrt wehould find Tho baptism was performed in a drawing - room of gnome pigeon or other bird of the air bad carried the Kensington ralaco on tho 24th of Junoby Dr. matter Mauucrs - Sutton, Archbishop of Canterbury, who used the gold fopt which figures among the Ke - ;alia in the Tower, - Tho lrince Urgent, who was present, named tho ehud Alexandnna then, being respectfully requested by the Duke ol Kent to pro a second name, he said, rather abruptly, " Let hor bo called Victoria, after her mother, but this namo must como after the other," upon which the Duke of York, as proxy for the Emperor of Russia, mado a low bow. All the On the 24th of Februarv. lEll.tho rrincess Vic - itoria for the first timo attended a. Drawins? Room. Scott was wrong in this conjecture, but quite Bind tho King was angrv because tho Duchess of right in saying that the Princess was joalouslyjl Kent behaved coldly to him, and, as ho declared, watched. Until sho became Queen sho never " made little Victoria look at him stonily." . . . , . ; (. . m - n.lH0""" aiierwarus mere was troubio because the written to the Duchess of Kent Mr childmn are dead, but your child lives and she Is mine too." Kind old William IV. also cherished affectionate feelings towards bia ntrrn nnfortnJ nately he took offence at the Duchess of Kent for declining to let her child come and live at his Court ft several months in each year, and through the whole of his roign thcro was strife between the two. Pnnco Leopold was no longer in Eng - jand to act as peacemaker. He had been induced, after refusing tho crown of Greece, to open a new career for himself at King of the Ltolgians ; and though he continued to exe. - ciso a cieat influence over his sister bv means cf letters, loth wise and long, this was not qmto tho same thing as if he had been present in person to administer soothing words when she felt aggrieved. There was a first dispute about 7&St"Ai:r' - Archbishop of Canter allowanco complained that she was being shabbily Btmrj'' and tio Marquis of Conyngham started in treated. 3a landau with four horses for Kensington. They'll be tattooing her face on their arms, B ton held tho Soals of the Foreign Office, the I'll "be bound theyf'li all think .he waBreteran Lord Lansdowne wui Lctd President, and for. and - h 1 ITnfiSlst hi bedside1, and' ni V o'clock on Monday.the lPth, an express was sent!" Chancellor cf tho Duchy or Lancaster. The j to Kensington, commanding the Princess Vic - 8 Cabinet nominal) r commanded a good majority! tona a immediate attendance. The Duchess cf gin the House of Commons, but it waa not popular ivens cnose to ignore this oruerthough she suD - gwitathe country, and at the lieneral Election 8 seouently explained this apparent want of good g which took place in July, 1837 (in pursuance of ! feeding by saying thittbo commands had not beraltho constitutional law which then required that orougni to her in the King's name, and that beat - he death of a fc'ovtreign should be followed by a had not understood his Majesty was at the Idis solution of Parliament), the Ministerial point of death. It had leen her intention to go gmajrrity was reduced to It. The reproach to Windsor on the followingday, but William IV. D against Lord Melbourne was for his want of aiea in ine night. yncrve ; hir policy was one of hand - tomouth nTTrvp i rrrr - airx? Bexpedients ; his Ministry were weak in hnance, lUl.t, b ACLJ3bIU. C.nd tho j.ad disanoointod the advanced section TTIE The King died at about! a.m., and half an hour flr)tirlip ra.: - o.l 1..1 ..ii.. sho was not allowed to converse with any grown - BPorlgmooth wfc(m ,fj0 went to tho Isle of Wht. up person, friend, .tutor, or servant without theg William IV. was much incensed at this, and Duchess of Kent or the Baroness Lchzen, bergnegotiations were opened with her Eoyal Iligh - r;. . k - ;. tVian tinlness to mako her forcn these bor.nun t but she walked in Kensingtonarden. sho"was cleselyB" e who waiKeu in rvensingion - garaens ana wns ciuaoijr n ,, ., " . , ;r - , ,, , . . . 1 . . v: i.D,BunS1I"nt,jr ordered that no n.jto guni followed by footmen. Leigh Hunt, who met herB hoida be,bumcd for hcr peaguro. ho! sponforshipwasdono by proxy, fortheinfant's. twonnear tho llayswater - gato in 1823 holding anotherg Iqot anything of Courts newl not be told hiw which they reached at 5 o'clock, from ivhind clouds and shed t The sun Iroke glory over the f their partT br taking their stand on the Reform Bill of 1332 as a measure of finality. They also set their faces against the Ballot, which was inj those days the test question by which a thorough - ! going reformer was known. I The true nu so for tho weakness of the Whirs lay, however, in the towering personal ascend - f old red Irick palace as theydrove up to it. andgency of the two Tory leaders the Duke of the Arehbishon notivl M n. w1 TlWellicztoa and Sir Ilobert Peel. A foreign (Vnii.. i .i ,!..' .i... , i istatesman described tho influence which the would tako nlaca on tho morrow. tl. fir, llfnr trcised in the councils of Europe as n summer and tho longest day of the year, which 1 Ln iagland there was a popular was of hapov1 aumirv too. Yot a lonr? timo. however, the two dignitaries who came to hail the girl Queen could not rouse the porter at tho gate". Their servants rang, knocked, and thumped ; and when at last admittance was cained. the Primate and tho Marquis were shown into a lower room and there loft to wait. IVesentlr a maid ap - nv(mnfliAr. t ha llnnam. IliinAH F UHrfAmhAmH H . tl. n nij m. that aha VAIHmtirh tim. anH .M. AHDCarLHl anil lltll mAC HA ITini'C V l,'7rrlV ST 3 . i.itisplewi Isay hcJ"',s8land Ul0 D'uenM1 BoWa?cr o Co, wcre re - eseorted by a magnificent scarlet footman withflquarrels of this sort. Emissaries journey jdi'Jn lftTYet IfP and could net bo disturtwl." cho repeat this just praise, that will sound in P.uchc", dowager of Gloucester respectively. Bof Northumberland (wife of the thir.1 DM),WarWtr omnium WB'S referrcd to and 7, fJthat this garment had not obtained for him more .... rmnire. Mchaps. not bo aware1owlTaccinatod - ancvcnt wUich mDSt 10 nonl much it implies I because it was tho first occasion on whicha mem - Queen Victoria was a ruler of a new typo. jber of the Itoyal Family underwent 'this opera - When she ascended the throne the popular faithH1,.' '. ""I'"" t - J I decline. ShegJuu" - u "K - "" """'''J - uihj, ia Kings and Queens was on the revived that faith : she consolidated her throno the not only captivated tho affections of the multitude, but won the respect of thoughtful men; scd all this she achieved by methods which to her predecessors would have seemed impractic - We methods which it required no less shrewdness shrewdness to discover than loreo of character and honettr of heart to adopt steadfastly. A Court jester once remarked that it was better for country to be governed by a Queen thanby a King, fce - in the latter case the mfluenceof women would jrevail, whereas in tho former tho ascendency of men was sure to make itself felt. Queen Victoria Victoria illustrated this maxim in a way never con - tenplated by the humourist, for she lived all her life subject to the guidance of wise men. But to accept the guidance cf the wise is in itself a sign of too rare wisdom. The Queen was no woman of placid temperament who could remain indifferent to public affairs o long as her domestic concerns were not interfered with. To imagine that she divested herself of all responsibilities and secured to herself a peaceful life by doing, without reflection, whatever her Ministers advised, wmildbe absolutely to misunderstand her intelli Sgent, sensitive nature, and to ascribe grand results to verr petty causes. It is with good advico as with other commodities the best is given to those who want the best and can judge of its quality ; and whilst all who aoproached the Queen have u lorne witness to her candour and reasonableness in "relations with her Ministers, all have likewise d proclaimed how anxiously she considered advice Ijthat was submitted to her before letting herself iwpersuadedihat sho must accept it for the good of her people. By thus acting sho put statesmen on their mettle, and raised the level of public morality. We know how in privates life our Jconductmay lie regulated by the fear of offending some person who claims no absoluto authority to check us, but whose good opinion wo highly value. Coming from snch a quarter a look of Rnf a mild question, or mere silence, arc potent Wmeans of control ; and it was mainly this kind of ignorant people. In Dccomber of the same year tho Duko and Duchess of Kent, anxious to re - govemess, complained in after years that she had never known much of tho child. u She was not my pupil, but Lehzon's ; it's Lehzen here, Lohzcn there, always Lehzen." Miss Lehzen, a native of Coburg, had como to England as governess to tho rrincess Feodoro of Loimngen, tho Duchess of Kent's daughter by her move their child from tho London winter, fogs, ro - ggrst husband, and sho became teacher to the paired to Woollirook - cottago, Pidmouth a rlea - gpYjnccss Victoria when the latter was five years sant marino villa on tho east coast of Devon ;g0ld. Georgo IV. afterwards made her a Baroness and here the iufant Princess was within an lnchl0f Hanover. She was a clever, sharp, active of being killed by a boy shooting at birds with a little woman, of voluble tongue and masterful bow - and arrows. Ono of theso arrows goingBenennr. with rrecn eves that stared suspiciously astray flew through a window at which the child lnt people liko two points of interrogation. At wasbeingheldby her nnrso, and it had boon shotBhcr death in 1870 the Queen wrote of her : with such forco that it stuck in tho canvas of aB gije knew mo from six months old, and from my picture on tho wall of tho room. This accident n fifth to my eighteenth years devoted all her care greatly nnrriod tho Duko of Kent, a worthy but 9 and energies to me with most wonderful abnega - nervous Prince, whoso sense of his own dignity gtion of self, never even taking one day's holiday, had been much enhanced by tho birth of hisgi adored, (hough 1 was greatly in awo of her. little girl. " Do you know your catechism, boy IgShe really seemed to have no thought but for mo." Tell mo, then, who paid you to shoot that arrow llTho Baroness's only weakness, according to Sir . . . Kh, eh, what 1 ' In these words his H John Conroy, tho Duchoss of Kent's secretary, Royal Highness addressed' the youthful sports - 1 was for German food, " messes of new potatoes man, and it was somo time before ho could bo D stewed with prunes and the liko;" her strong convinced that no foul deed had Icon in - B points wore a frosty serenity and a smile liko the tended. U sun in February. She knew that people envied TK Tnl - nnf Kent xrnn at tliU dalK9 TKin rdA lk. nn.lll.n .r4 .nmiimM n!Tni) hsr t having, like all his Ivothers, a portly figure and 8 but with masculine determination she nover let! the Duke " must be consulted, and this g - tve him I a position above parties. In the House of Lords - he was supreme. Xot cnlr did his words carrr I seat weight, but he centrally had the proxies oft about vi peers in his beeping, and could thus a til an iimcs cvduvi a division, in me iiomsvii Commons, the power of Sir Robert Peel was, com - ! parativeiy speaking, hardly less than that of the I Duke in the Lords. Diznified without! elegance," as Guizot tersely described him a! tall, portly man. wealthy, full of scholarship,! quick at figures, a mastecpf words and of pen - 8 pnrases in wtiich be could clothe his meaning so J at to hide it, and rid himself of compromising; responsibilities ho seemed tormost of hist countrymen tho embodiment cf respectability and! of square sense. It has been well said that he 5 owed much cf his popularity to this that he it broke out in nnr.tW. TK TWhnnd fc.id ptHvi I that he had come on Jitate business, to which at Kensington Palace, and tho King was dis - ieverything, even sleep, must give place. The pleased at her appropriating a suite of 17 KKsmsJP1100" W3S. accordingly roused, and quickly without his permission. In 1831, when tho IYin - caraedowlltafcs 'na dressing gown, her fair hair cess was confirms! in tlm .ir1 n( St Jm' R flowing loose ever ker shouldcrs. The Duchess ... , , . . : . . . . " . - . m . - . j . i i Kuweit iuucu ik uis wpuiariir uj iiiis lie raiaco ty the Archbishop ol Canterbury ;,luja " u,c3an tu "VY' - gnevcr far outstripped his contemporaries, and Majesty felt hnrt Wansn tbn Tlnehpia did notH and ia a lew minutes the cver - vunlant Baroness! , 51 - . . - .. . r : T . Bt.l . i ii. "siv - iu S'w"J "J Kiivu uiumtiui. a tj lair matters worse, tho Duchess and her daughter ?ushirS from her lips. The young Queen shed spentagraat part of 183 1 and 1835 in rounds of gtears on hearing tho Archbishop's very solemn visits to"tho country houses of tho nobility, andBanno?ncoraent nn fr a few moments she stood certain mischievous busvbodios rersuadod the! weeping in silence, with her face resting on her Kins that tlm rJiirt r,f tbosn rTTxditinns was tnlmother's shoulder. 1 felt no exultation, but undermine his popularity. As a matter of ict,g something like fear, shewroto afowdaysIatertogandLor,IPaiincraton his airy John - BuUism.Bl hact everto" u - o.u. - wi - neu w a.K iuo "gfound it hard worUo contend. Ponderous and vuuuu lu uuer up ajprayer. a nau maue up iny planiibl - Feel had a talent for making Lord t ncnever tno sai news snoum g jchn & anJ Pallnerstcn flippant ; he J como. but I grew confused from hearing Mme.g. i i', ,;... ,, ,kI1 UjI any given moment a very of any riven Englishman of average Knowledge and ability. Against such a champion, backed by an enthusiastic following of the ablest younc men in Parliament amonz whom were Mr. Gladstone and Mr. Disraeli, who in 1837 took his seat as 3I.F. for Jlaidstono Lnrd John Russell, with his captious earnestness, ijl tho Duchess of Kent had too muc speak of the King with disrespect, and her visits to Bolvoir, Holkham. Burshloy, Chatsworth, Alton Towers. Walmer. and other places were undertaken because it seemed good that the Princess should become acquainted with the loading members of the aristocracy. It was equally desirable that the foremost among the t.... ...i. : i .i ..l.i ... i t 1 tt... tboir future Queen had boon properly educated, BQucon von Lehzen address mo by ray new title and ",bnns the other's prudence under suspicion ; sol Lord Conyngham for details." The Queen's lthi aI1 thi uMmAt it .urpril first care on regaining wmposure was to write a i that thevhigs should have remained infl letter of condolence to Queen Adelaide, and she , ong than that they should have been 1 addressed this letter "To her Maiesty the ; a, . tjfl Somobodyhad the bad taste to sucgest that the word " Dowager " should" be added. " I will not bo the first to - remind my aunt of the great loss she has sustained, answered her jiajosty, urns evincing at me outset oi ner reign the kindly tact which ever distinguished hei public and privaxe conduct. She was at tho timo of her accession in her l&hyear, of pleasing countenance withcut being a double chin : he was, moreover, tho baldest of Bthcm seo that they had succeeded. Sho was an the family, as can to seen by the picture of him Bo'l pert diplomatist ' o, and ingratiated herself in the National Portrait Gallery, and it wasBwith Goorgo IV., who, on two or three occasions this that suggested Sheridan's spiteful little jokelwhen she visited Windsor with her pupil, con - about grass not growing upon deserts. The Duke ggratulated her in grandiloquent terms on the heard of this pleasantry, and remarked mildly, Icxcellent education which she was imparting. " If Sheridan means that I haven't genius, IgTho little Princess Drina (from Alexandnna), as can tell him that such a gift would have becnB sho was called till her ninth year, at first took of small value to a Prince, whoso business it is Hall her lessons in Gorman, and sho learnt to to keep quiet. I am luckier in having, liko mygspeak her native tongue with such a Teutonic H county, a sound constitution." Ilisconstitution, g accent that sho made her uncles laugh by sayin; however, vras less solid than ho thonght, for in January, 1820, liaving caught cold from sitting two hours in wet loots to read a packet of Hanoverian Hanoverian newspapers, his system broke down all cf a sudden, andhediedfire days before his Irother, tho Prince Regent, succeeded to the throno as Georgo IV. ; EARLY YEARS. I The widowed Duchess of Kent was no longer in her first youth. Shwasa womanof 34, hand some, homely, a German at heart, and with so Goot mornink." But this peculiarity wore off when in her tenth year she was placed under English masters. Tho Rev. Goorgo Davys, after wards - Bishop of Peterborough, taught her Latin ; Mr. J. B. Sale, music ; Mr. Westall, history ; and Mr. Thomas Seward, the writing" master of West minster School, gave her instruction in penman ship, and often amused her by relating the pranks played by tho King's Scholars on Edward the Confessor's foundation. In all her studies tho rrincess was diligent, but she exhibited a special aptitude for modern languages, music, and drawing. She grew up to bo a rood linguist, sho sketched cleverly, and she sang with a pretty voice and a correctness which in later years drew a surprised compliment from Mendelssohn. Goorge IV. complained that he did not sec that sho was no German mispronouncing her native tongue, that sho had no domineering spirit or unorthodox religious opinions, and, above all, that she evinced no disposition to marry a Roman Catholic princo. What fables may not be circulated about a young girl who is to wear a crown ? The news - na tiers of the time bear evidenco of the inordinate curiosity that was felt by tho public as to all I pretty, and of dignified deportment without con - gin many cases with signal benefit, throughout herH,llue , l" 1,"'u - f wo l'" NlunTtign Jj life - long residenco in this country was at fi!' . - . : :,. H first distressing to her. But she was a woman Hr,rr,T..!rl it ofTor. of rrpat national artilmmi,. iof experience and shrewd S.f.rHi,,., innovation, and nmrrr.. in Arorv dir - aW"" that wcro RlnS t0 devolve upon her m S,. ' " - iio fi - c ntiltrair tra ront - nrtid toforoBthe education of her child, and fortunately she K Victoria came to the throno, tut tho universal "" " , .. .... " - ""M . ftAT ;r. th ,nni!,nM. r.ftm n wlaftorwards King of tho Belgians, a safe and g sho should bo present at a children's party which t - irirr - took nlai - o m her time, and it TirofonndlrH"" v .cwu H h" - . " a't - t - d the conditions of rolitical and socialBEnSlanJhad hocome a pec"'"" and painful one. Blittlo Queen of Portugal, who was then aged 10, in enmo rr.rt tlin nnfmn - o if r - i.nifirD'l nad licen the husband of tho lrincess Char - ghaving been born in the same year as ictoria ...,... .it ; - Blotte of Wales, daughter of tho Regent and H Her small Majesty was a pretty child, but she V,a .li.nnrirt.l iT.im' WWo Jror idiroct heir to tto British Crown, who diedggot a fall in dancing, turned cross, and wcntHgiven on tho JOth August : and there the Kinr, others it has disappointed them. "hcroovcr - B . .,.B.. . vu.u n.; (u.,i..i..JLn, tnant - a for thn drinking of his hpalth. in 1817 with her new - born child, and this doublegaway ; tho English Princess, on tho other hand, liereavement had destroyed loth his domestic I though observed to bo " a short, plain child," won happiness and his political expectations, lcavingggood opinions from everybody by her sweetness of him with a doubtful status and no definite work H temper. " Sho s just uko me in that to do. Bo wandered about tho country with a gremarkod his Majesty innocently to his doctor forlorn look on his thin, keen face, and peopleBand confidant Knighton, and ho said something ti - rin nntiririatioTm liad lrn formrnl. tritKont h taking human nature into account, they have I . . r. i; 1 TT" 1 i 1 ' - - u leit ucrcaiiii.'u. moib, uitu uui ceasin ratriotismhas not declined even among tho pinio ns' ;.hers wno nave sougti to prove its aosuruiiy ; rtligious controversy is as me as ever; anu,onme whole, notwithstanding that i hum mill t i nl i oil . - ,L r.t .t - 5j "r1.gl'nnce Lieopoid in his sorrow had never had the U ho lorgoi irnorant. They may know mora than their B , ,b , ... . ., , . . . ! J . . . fathers did, but tho difference between them and schools' book's andBeed h'm WIth a resiectful pity as a melancholy I about buying tho little girl " a bushel of pearls d beyond TOmrnta.jrounS '"a1 wfco was going to dio of consumption. Bfor her next birthday," which kindly intention a.a : ...ii - BPrinco Leopold in his sorrow had never had the Q ho forgot to fulfil. In tho following year this His coronation had cost and he was fretting in Scotland when ho heardlthe country 240,000 and his debts at different the highly - educated classes is mere marked than' Iof her father's death ; but on receiving tho news it could have "been in the days when all scienceB"0 aucc "um'iu " T was comprehended in a knowledgo of theology Bho lho hlId - cr his guardianship, lavish I A .v. - .1 A WUI. - U ucuuuu uu ucr 3 ll Sim ll a a oeei Elizabeth's reign' was not so far, intellectually hi "B - jter. speaking, from his rulers as the newspaper - readingreading readingreading workman of Victoria's time from his ; but as this truth isthe reverse of popular it must be pro nounced as the greatest wonder of Victoria's reign that her people, though free and often agitated agitated by mob - flatterers, should have lived in willing, loving subjection to her governance. That the Queen's personal character contributed greatly to the stability of this country's institutions institutions cannot be doubted. There were several occa sions during her reign when an imprudent act on her part might have caused a sudden downfall of valued institutions ; but she rode safely through every storm, and the story of her life is full of extraordinary interest as showing how she contrived to be so prudent and fortunate til Let days closed amid incomparable lustre. BIRTH AND PARENTAGE. Victoria was born in Kensington Palace on Tho Princo lived at Claremont, and this became the Duchess of Kent'soccasional home; but she was much addicted to travelling, and - spent several months every year in visits to watering places. It was saidatUourt that she liked the demonstrative demonstrative homage of .crowds ; but tho truth was that she had good reason to fear her child would be taken away from her to bo educated according to the views of Georgo IV, his sister - in - law there was littlo love. Tho spirited Duchess had never concealed her dislike for his Majesty's character, or her contempt for his associates of loth sexes, and she had also managed to mako an enemy of tho ill - natured Duko of Cumberland, whom the King feared for his cutting tongue. Tho Duko sought to embitter his brothers mind against tho Duchoss of Kent, and when the death of the Duke of Clarence's two children, in 1800 and 1821, had made it pretty certain that Princess Victoria would become that concerned tho rrincess, and Lord Melbourne! straint in her movements. She had line eyes said that ho constantly had to answer foolish H questions about tho lTincess that were put toH him by people who ought to have known better. Two carls and a bishop came to him ono day and assured him that they had received tho most positive information touching a scheme for marrying marrying tho rrincess Victoria to a German prince who was but nominally a Lutheran, having privately privately abjured his faith, " and I had to listen seriously. ' said tho Premier, "for if I had made light of tho matter I should have bad ton times that number of bishops and twenty times that number of earls wanting to know if I was sound on the subject of Protestant succession." Tho Duchess of Kent by taking her daughter to visit tho nobility in their country homes, whero thoy had better opportunities for studying tho young lady's cha racter than they would nave nau in lionaon drawing rooms, dispelled all ill - natured rumours, and sho satisfied everybody whose opinion was of weight that tho Princess's training had in all points been excellent. In fact, too great praise cannot be given to tho Duchess as a mother. a Sho could not bo exiiected to think on British fl politics as an Englishwoman, and yet sho nadj carefully watched that her daughter should' be inoculated with no foreign ideas about govern - ; ment that sho should conceive no preforonee for, or prejudice against, either party in the; fj State. For all this, William IV.'a resentment against the Duchess of Kent only increased as the Princess Princess grew older, and it fonnd vent at last in a Duchess at his own table. In 1830 the Princess! Victoria had failed to attend two drawing rooms, and the ijucnoss nau reiuseti an invitation invitation to spend a few days' at Windsor on the occasion of Queen Adelaido's birthday. But she and her daughter wcre present at a banquet and a rosy complexion ; she smiled readily, and had a gentle,wistful glance, which always seemed to solicit the approbation of those to whom she feeble in their rule. So far as concerned Lordfj Melbourne personally, it was a positive disad - lD vantage to him that from the first he ingratiated himself with tho young Queen, and thereby exposed himself to unreasoning party jealousies. Lord Melbourne was an amiable, warm - hearted man. Biographers have published his domestic troubles, and everybody has read the story of how, when a deed ot separation was being drawn op between him and his wife, the lawyers who entered his study with the instrument found him reclining on a sofa, while Lady Melbourne, seated on his knee, was feeding hrm with bread and butter. There was a double dancer that man of such winning character might? possessed or spont. Among his effects were gP.ut nP,n 1 ,em,1 1 ,"' nd more than 000 pocket books of different!.. - ,i M, ff - t w. to dpntmv all Solace on tho 21st at Ft. James's Palace with nerves of a delicate girl still under her mother's g times two millions. He had no notion of what ho foun beenidatos and in every ono of them money guineas and notes about 10,000 in all. His other relics, says Charles Greville, were " a prodigi ous quantity of hair women's hair, of all colours and lengths some locks with the powder acd pomatum still sticking to them ; also heaps of women's gloves, which ho had got' at balls, billtts doux, &c." "He did some good " observed an apologist after his death. " Oh, yes," answered Theodore Hook, " he made his subjects merry Between this King and fl when they heard him grayed for as Our most religious and gracious King. spoke and turned quickly to astonishment crleither yield too much tothe Court, or by the sadness if she met no genial response. nerBcb4nn c ys domineer over the Sovereign dancing mistress, Mile. Bourdin, had taught and il9 hcr mind a bias trf, his party, her to walk, bow, and curtsey in the French gThe Tprie, fcared the latter contingency f Lord lasnion mat w, u pacious inclinations cih h Mr jhud, and all ardent Liberals the head and cheerful looks (which were contraryd g$ed their springs a, to the former, to the etiquette of German Courts, where every - g ha Qneen openod her first Parliament in thing used to bo done witn rigid grayitywoutM and in a weU - written speech, which she the happy vivacity cf the Princess s dispositicngJcadwithmn'hfeen adTcrtcd to her youth and prevented any of her gestures from appeanngg oncce,sitywhichexisted for her beinz cuidod artificial, bhe was always natural, and waived gb enIif,ttened advisers. When both Houses etiquette whenever it interfered with a free dis - gh'ad Tcted joyal addre8ges, the question of the play ot her impulses towams anyuouy wnom sne BCivilListwasconsidered,and a week or two later oved or honoured, ner demeanour throughout the trying day when she succeeded to the Throne excited general admiration by its modest sell - posossion and propriety. The Privy Council assembled at Kensington a at 11 o'clock ; and tho usual oaths were administered to tho Quefcn by Lord Chancellor Cottenham, alter which ail present did homage, There was a touching incident when uncles, the Dukes of Cumberland am: old men, came forward to perform their The Queen blushed to tho brow, and descending from her throno kissed them lth, without allowing thorn to kneel. By tho death cf William IV. tho Duke of Cumberland had become King cf Hanover, and immediately after the ceremony he made haste to reach his kingdom. Within a fortnight of his arrival there he had revoked the a messago was brought to Parliament requesting an increase of the grant formerly made to the Duchess of Kent. Covernment recommended an addition ot 30,000 a year, and this led to an angry scene in the Lords' between Brougham and Melbourne. Bronzham alluded to the " Queen Mother," upon which Melbourne interrupted, J isavinrr. " Mother ot the yceen which is vervfa the Queen's Q Aiht I mnf, I am t.nt mAa nf inoorh'ld I Sussex, tvroBsn.s.nn,irmnTnam Mv tuj.la friend fa mnohN obeisance, fl ,f. mnrtier hia torntme i tetter hnnir - mfl is well acquainted with the motions of those who rloze and fawn and bend the knee in Courts." Stung to the quick, Melbourne retorted 9 that he knew " of no man in the country who 2 could more gloze and natter and bend the, jknee " than Brougham. j The proposed addition was voted, and before returning thanks for the drinking of his health, made a lachrvmoso speech, in wnicn he railed at his sister - in - law for being his enemy. " I hope," ho continued with growing excitement. " that I may livo at least nine months longer, until my dear nieco is of age, so that there may be no Regency. A person near nie (the Duchess) is surrounded by evil counsellors, and is unfit to ConstituUon of the country and T' f .Vsgthecloso of the year a Civil List BUI was passed, had " cnt the wings cf democracy." Had Queen Victoria died without issue, this Prince, who was arrogant, ill - tempered, and rash, would have become King of Great Britain - ; and, a s nothing but mischief could have resulted from this, one may understand how very precious tho young Queen's life becamo in the sight of her people. She, of courso, retained the late King's Ministers in their offices, and it was under Lord Melbourne's Melbourne's direction that the Privy Council drew up their declaration to the kingdom. It may 1 remarked of this document that it described tho Queen as Alexandnna V ictona.andall the peers 8 . ?i . .i il. m : ii ii t i S exercise tno iuues or ner. siaiion. ims amai - iuu uo.n .u . iso to the mostlltne Win oi June swore auepianceioiicrunuermosej the 2tth of May, 1819. Her parents had beenlQueen, the Duchess felt that the King might llinng at Amorbach, in Franconia, owing to the Duke of Kent's straitened circumstances, but Ithey returned to this country on purpose that their child should bo born an Englishwoman, and the Duke was so anxious for tho safety of abis wife that he himself drove the carriage over jail the land part of the journey from Bavaria to London. Edward, Duke of Kent, was the fourth ton of George III. ; his wife was the Princess I Victoria Maria Louisa of Coburg, who had been I married a first time to Prince Enrich Charles of iLeinineen. and by him had two children. The I newspapers, announcing in a few meagre lines jthe birth of the Duke of Kent's baby, stated that (the Archbishop of Canterbury had been present at the Palace during the occurrence, as the con - i ttitntional usage is, when an hcir - prosumptive (to the Crown is bora ; yet tho event was not con sidered at the time one of great importance, for ccreral lires and many possibilities stood be - tween the infant and her chacco of succeeding to (the throne. George III. wis still alive aged, (blind, and insane : and two brothers of the j Prince Regent, older than the Duke of Kent, possibly obtain the support of his Ministers if he insisted that the future Sovereign should be broughtup under masters and mistresses desiz nated by himself. " That would mean by a set of Lady Conyngham's choosing," the Duchess usedfl to exclaim, ana sne would add that she liked to be in places where she could appeal to the rough and ready help of an English mob if some tipstaff came with an order from the Privy Council requiring her to give up hor little cirl." There can be little doubt that such an order was contemplated, for, as the author of " The Greville Memoirs says, George IV. was in tempera thorough despot ;butthe Duke of Wellington Wellington always took the Duchess's part and dwelt on tho ercat confidence which statesmen of all parties felt in Prince Leopold, it might be curious to speculate as to the effects which would hare been wroucht on the Prinsess had she received an edu cation expressly designed to train her for Royal duties. If ten wise men had been consulted consulted nine of them would have declared that tho heiress to a throno ought certainly to bo REIGN OF WILLIAM IV. William IV. having ascended tho throne, the Princess Victoria became his heir. A Regency Bill was introduced into Parliament by Lord Lyndhurst, Chancellor in the Duke of Wellington's Administration, and it was judged that the Princess ought now to be told of her proper place in the order of succession. Ono day the Baroness Lehzen put a genealogical table into her pupil's English nistory. What followed is mentioned in a note to Sir Theodore Martin's " Life of the Prince Consort": The Princess opened the book and p retiring the a additional paper said : " I never saw that before It was not thought uecessarj that joa shoald. Madam," answered her governess. " I see I am In outburst micht have civen riso 1 serious coniectures if tho Princess Victoria had not boen jlrvaiiy well known to a large circle of public men. Tho words evil counsellors " lay open to any construction that party malice might mem. as ll was.iney were ascrioeu i'y mere senile peevish' names. It was not mi ine iouowing oayin.ua the Sovereign's stylo was altered to Victoria fl simply, and wis necessiiaieu ice issuing oi a new declaration and a re - signing of the peer's roll. Tho public proclamation cf the Queen took chance of a good understanding between tho Kin; and tho mother of the future Queen. In Mav.lSST. the Duchess received an address t ... U Pitr r,f Tnrinn. rnnTfttnlatinf her on the majority of her daughter.and in hcr reply shegfrom Hyde Park Corner, where the masses became hinted that she had been friendless when she! more dense, the young Queen, m her open arrived in England, and had since that time metg carriage, w creeie" wim curcrs?o ioua nu with kindness only from tho nation, not from the I hearty that by the time she reached St. James s linval Family. Exasperated at this, William IV.Bsae was auiremDuugwita emoura. zno appeareu settling 3S.,000 a year on her Majesty, iff. flume's motion for reducing that grant byiO,0fO mnsterinz only 11 votes. The remainder of tho Session was engrossed by the affairs of Canada,' where disturbances had arisen so serious that haditnotbecn for the romantic loyalty entertained towards the girl - Queen by the majority of her Transatlantic subjects it is probable that the colony would have been lost to us. The troubles vote througn uie opposition oserea oy us Legis lature of Lower Canada to some resolutions carried in the House of Commons in March, 1336. The House of Commons had declined to make the Council of Lower Canada elective, to continue the Charter of the land Company. or to authorize the Provincial Government to dispose dispose on its own responsibility of certain moneys in the Treasury. Excited meetings were held all over the colony, armed riots took place, and the Mmiitrr mtroauceu a liiii ma Kin? lemrorarv provision forth a government of Lower Canada. At the same time, the Earl of Durham, a Whig? nobleman, cutiwra ilu raum unnoricii auuicj than administrative talent, was sent out as Governor - General and High Commissioner for re - vowed he would hold no more terms with the Duchess. Tho amount cf the ITincess's allowance allowance was under discussion at the time, and the Duchoss desired to bo appointed trustee for her Hanhter : but tho Kinrr declared tlrtt tho Prin cess should have 10,000 a year for her own sole I use uncontrolled, and he wrote her a private letter to this effect in fatherly terms. The Mar - nni. nf Conrnirham. Lord Chamberlain, bore the misaivo to Kensiiicton, and the Duchess of Kent hl1 out her hand to receive it. " 1 he King's commands are that I should deliver the letter to tho Princess Victoria," said Lord Conyngham as iwMIt as possible, and he aid this, ice Ppin - Aia nau never ueioro uau u uuuwucu letter put into her hands. Before breaking the seal she turned witn an anecnonaie gesture towards her mother, as if to lg her permission ; and eventually.by the Duchess's advice.a grateful n.arM - was written, thanking the King for his intended kindness. But the allowance was never ..hi1 na four weeks later William IV. died TKt Ttmriof June - M in recoraing nis aeatni said : He was not a man of talent or of much refinement ; care. Crowds lined the whole rente from Kensing - gati the affairs cf the Upper and Lower Proton, Proton, which then stood quite in the suburbs ; andgnces - , It wa8 characteristic of Lord Brougham that, after attacking the Canada Bill with arguments indicating his dislike for the retention by England of distant colonies, he inveighed against Ministers for not arming Lord Durham villi visiwor ftT4onti,a arwvtifrh lf nnniA t)i at a window in the court - yard of the Palace, fl.'f n ' r;..;n tn nn,!l Piurm'i dressed in deep jnourning. with a white tippet, grerolt ; South America, "a service which Gasca white cuffs, and border of white lace under her gnprfomed by tho exercise of unlimited rowers small blacfe lonnet : and everybody noticed how gjy entrusted to him by Charles V. - These pale she was. Sir Ralph Big and, Garter Kicg.g; reported in Canada were not calculated to made his proclamation according tothe quaint!.,,., . h th Horalista rnf afrmv. old forms, in presence of the Lord Mayer cf London Q ,n(Tthey had repressed the rev. .Its before Lord and ohenas.tJieratonicersot.suteandacohortHiM,i,.l,.?l Tfi nnremor - General tln nm. of heralds ; and when his concluding words were mniated some Ordinances, which decreed that followed by a blare of trumpets and the acclama - g.71 rincleaders of the rebellion should to exiled to tions of a loyal crowd thronging all the approaches to the Palace, the Queen's fortitude for amomerj forsook her. It was in allusion to this that tin a both Barrett Browning wrote her pretty lines about gxiis arbitrary proceeding was worthy cf Gasca, we cnnu - vueen wno - - wept w wear crown . Hbut when a copy 01 tne U rrincess, and after some moments returned : Kow. many a child would boast, but they don't know the difficulty. There is much splendour, tot there is more responsibility." The Princess having lifted op the toraCnfcr of her right hand while the spoke, gave the Baroness her little hand, repeating . " I will be good. I understand now why yon urged me so much to learn' e ran Latin. My aonta, Uary and Augusta, never did ; but you told me Latin is the foundation of Enc Ush grammar and ! all elegant expressions, and I learned it as yon wished it, but I understand alii better now," ana ue mneess gave ner band, repeat ing, I will be good." The governess then said : " Bat your Aunt Adelaide is still young and may have children, and of court they woold ascend the throne after their father, William IV. and not you, Princess The Prineess answered, " And if it were so 1 should not be 'disappointed, for I know by the love Aunt Adelaide boars me bow food she is of children." Queen Adelaide was a very good woman nearer the throne than I thonght," continued thegtat be was diligent, and It beared at that which heH considered his duty to comprenena. nincere in nu declarations acd of inoffensive nature, he displayed no grots, nor great, nor memorable attributes. 111 be bad a warm heart, and it wan an English heart. Posterity has ratified this judgment, nothing in to or detracting from it William I . was English after the manner of a sailor, whoj could not separate religion from patriotism, nor! patriotism from fighting. Five days before hisj death he said to his doctor,"! know I am going, but 1 should luce to see anouer anniversary of Waterloo ; try if you cannot tinker n at least till that day." He would not let the Waterloo Banquet be postponed on account of his illness, but sent a message to the Duke of Wellington saying he hoped his Grace andguects would have a good dinner. The thought of his !. hours dwelt often on his niece, and he repeatedly said that he was sure she would be"a cod woman and a good Queen." "Itwill touch She taw no purple thine. For tears had dimmed ber eyes : She only knew' ber childhood's flowers Were happier pageantries. And while the heralds played their part, For million abonts to drown " God save the Qaeen " from hill to mart. She beard, through all. her betting heart ; And turned and wept ; She wept to wear a crown. God save thee, weeping Qneen, Tbon thalt be well beloved ! The tyrant's sceptre cannot move. As those pore teart have moved. The nature ia thine eyes we see; Which tyrants cannot own, The love that gaardeth liberties; Great bletting on the Nation ties. Whoa Sovereign wept. Yes, wept to wear a crown. LORD MELBOURNE AND THE QUEEN. At the time of the Queen's accession Lord Melbourne's second Ministry had been in office two years. In 1333 it had succeeded Sir Robert Peel's first Administration, which had been defeated on Lord John Russell's Bill for dealing Bermuda, and that if they returned to Canada without licence they should be adjudged guilty! of high treason acd be put to peath untried. ( decree reached Encland Tirrt lSn - nrrham was ine nrst to denounce it. and' f he rapidly carried tnrougn the llouse ot Lords.by a majority 01 13 against ine Government, a UiU which was practically a censure on Lord Durham. In consequence cf this Lord Durham resigned, and the whole affair gave the Queen hcr first insight into some oi the curious tactics of party g warfare. 1 any srxue commenced soon on a matter mat more closely concerned her that of her marriage. Ministers were accused in all seriousness of trying to win Irish votes by dallying with ue luea ci a vauioiic marriage, ana uey got many a pointed reminder from the JTess that the throne would become vacant if such a project were carried out. It had Ions been arranged. however, between the Duchess of Kent and her brothers, King Leopold and the Zmkeot Coburg,: that the Oneen should marrv her cousin. Prince Albert of Saxe - Coburg, and the Pricco himself 2 had been made acauainted with this plan from a I his earliest years. hen he ws s three years 01a his nurse used to prattle to him about "the little May Flower," nis destined bride in England. England. In 1806 Prince Albert, who was born in the same year at his future wife, had eotae on a visit to England with his father ami with his brother, Princo Ernest, and his handsome face, centle disposition, and playful humour had pr with the temporalities cf the Irish Church. Lord who, a few days after duced a favourable intresslon ca tha Princess, w his departure, was frankly

Clipped from The Times23 Jan 1901, WedPage 23

The Times (London, Greater London, England)23 Jan 1901, WedPage 23
staff_reporter Member Photo

Want to comment on this Clipping? Sign up for a free account, or sign in