FeaturesHistoryInsight

A 'lost' letter from Ella?

In the Western manuscripts collection held at the British Library are what are known as the Boyd Carpenter papers, Vol. V, Add MS 46721: 1884-1917. This remarkable collection of documents contain letters written in English from or on behalf of various crowned heads of Europe or their consorts, as well as other members of Europe’s ruling families. These letters were written to William Boyd…
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A Quick Look at Royal Christening Cakes

The wedding cakes in Queen Victoria’s family were magnificent examples of edible ceremony. Once they reached the age of photography, they were faithfully recorded for posterity. These images still have the power to enchant today, even in long ago albums. Just looking at these gorgeous cakes allows us to almost taste them by sight across the centuries. They were luscious creations. Rich in royal…
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Royal Brides: Princess Mary of Teck

Picked as a royal bride by Queen Victoria herself, Princess Mary of Teck would find her way to the altar in the most unusual circumstances. For Mary ended up saying ‘I do’ to the second king in waiting selected as a husband for her. But her marriage proved to be…
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Knitting with Queen Victoria

A charming photograph taken by Mary Steen in the Queen’s Sitting Room at Windsor on 21 May 1895 shows an elderly Queen Victoria knitting or crocheting, sat with her youngest daughter, Beatrice, Princess Henry of Battenberg, who dutifully reads the newspaper aloud to her mother whilst the Queen listens, needles in her hand and a ball of wool at her feet. It is a wonderfully domestic snapshot…
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Queen Victoria's Bridesmaids

Queen Victoria had twelve bridesmaids. What do we know about them? What did they wear? Certainly the Queen – as might be expected – had a greater number of bridesmaids than her daughters would at their weddings, eight being a recurring choice. We can see them clustered…
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Finding the royal faces in the roses: Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

In the Queen’s bedroom at Osborne House, may be found a quite extraordinary chintz pattern. Used for the bed hangings of the Queen’s bed, as well as the sofa and curtains, the material has been adopted in a modern context for the room, having originally been for the Royal Yacht Victoria and Albert. The Queen and the Royal Family would often cross the Solent to Osborne in either the yacht…
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