Features

All the Queen's rings

We know that rings were important to Queen Victoria because of the numerous references to them which she made in her journal and the fact that they feature so strongly in her photographic legacy. Her hands are literally covered with them. We must assume then, that they occupied a significant place in her personal jewellery and as such, were a striking part of her appearance like the widow’s caps…
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Features

Queen Victoria and Claridge's

Sometimes known as ‘the annexe to Buckingham Palace’, the classic hotel in London’s Mayfair has time-honoured connections with royalty that exist into the present day. From the earlier single building run by William and Marianne Claridge at 51 Brook Street…
FeaturesHistory

Queen Victoria's wedding wreath

Queen Victoria’s exquisitely woven wedding dress of Spitalfields silk satin survives. Her wedding veil was placed over her face as her body was dressed and prepared for burial at Windsor. Fascinatingly as I found out during research, the wedding veil and one of the…
Features

Prince Albert, the Royal Skater

This year marks the bicentenary of not only the birth of Queen Victoria but also of her husband, Prince Albert. Prince Albert, Queen Victoria’s beloved consort, was an eager skater who loved winter sports as part of enduring royal pleasure. Not only did he drive the Queen’s sledge when the royal couple were visiting Brighton during a sudden snowfall, but he also enjoyed charming activities…
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Features

Queen Victoria's last Christmas

Queen Victoria spent her last Christmas at Osborne in 1900. It was forty years exactly since Prince Albert had celebrated his final Christmas in 1860 at Windsor, the setting for so many happy family festivities in the past. Prince Albert did not live to see Christmas 1861…
History

Christmas at Windsor to include gifts exchanged by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

The bicentenary of the births of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert will be celebrated by a small display at Windsor, once the setting for the many Christmases which the royal couple spent together with their growing family of nine children. Displayed in the Octagon Dining Room, it will recall the ritual of the Bescherung, [‘Giving of Gifts’] the traditional German custom of exchanging gifts on…
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FeaturesHistory

When Mozart met Marie Antoinette?

The ‘meeting’ between Marie Antoinette and the young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart has a fabled quality, not least because of the oft-repeated folklore that has grown around it. From the point of view of posterity, it is a fascinating moment to contemplate, when two legendary (Austrian) figures were in the same room, their biographical futures lying still before them. I want to explore the facts…
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