Queen Victoria’s life was very similar to the life of Queen Elizabeth I in terms of that she wasn’t expected to take the throne. Born in May 1819, the girl was only the fifth heir to the throne. During her reign, that lasted for as many as 64 years, she did a lot for her country, and people living in it. The Victorian era is known as one of the best periods in the life of the UK, with Victoria being one of the most powerful and inspiring women figures in the world.
Her life and personality served as the basis for many books and series. Even though her name is known all over the world, there are facts about her that many people don’t know. We want to share some of these facts with our readers. Here they are…
Queen Victoria: 8 interesting facts about one of the most outstanding British queens
1. Queen Victoria could speak fluently several languages
Due to the fact that her mother had German roots, the Queen could speak fluently not only English but also German. That was quite convenient because she often spoke to her husband, Prince Albert, in German. Throughout her life, she also studied French, Latin and Italian and could clearly express her thoughts in these languages.
During her last years, she studied Hindu and Urdu because she needed to communicate with the servants from India, an interesting fact about Queen Victoria. Describing her experience of learning new languages, she noted that it was very interesting for her to speak a new language and communicate with different people in that language.
2. She started the tradition of a white wedding dress
Nowadays, a white wedding dress is simply a tradition followed by many brides. The truth is that in the Victorian era brides wore wedding dresses of all colors, except white. An interesting fact about Queen Victoria is that the tradition was started by her, who wanted to stand out and draw attention to the beautiful lace embroidery on her dress. She went as far as to forbid all her guests to come in white dresses to her wedding. She did that on purpose because she didn’t want anyone to draw attention from her on the most important day of her life.
3. Her first name wasn’t Victoria
The Queen was named Alexandrina Victoria in honor of her godfather, Tsar Alexander I. However, it was her desire to be called by her second name.
4. She was proclaimed the Queen at the age of 18
The Queen’s father, Edward, Duke of Kent, died a year after her birth. Her mother was doing her best preparing young Princess for the role of the Queen. She was afraid that the girl would have to ascend to the throne before she was officially of age. To ensure that the future Queen was properly educated, her mother developed the so-called Kensington system implying discipline and a busy timetable of lessons on a wide range of subjects.
The Queen’s mother took the question of her safety very seriously. Upon hearing that one of Prince Edward’s family members had the plan to kill her daughter, she decided to put an end to any communication with the family. Whether that was only rumors or not, would stay forever unknown. Anyway, the Princess was proclaimed Queen Victoria on the 20th of June, 1837.
5. The Queen proposed to her future husband
She met her future husband when she was 17 years old. Believe it or not, but it was love at first sight that ended in marriage 4 years after the couple’s first meeting. The rules of those times stated that the reigning monarch could not be proposed to. Therefore, the Queen herself had to ask Prince Albert to marry her.
The couple married in February 1840. The marriage certainly was a happy one and produced as many as 9 children, an interesting fact about Queen Victoria. Even though the Queen could always rely on her servants to take care of the children, she didn’t seem to enjoy motherhood much.
6. Queen Victoria started the tradition of ruling from the Buckingham Palace
The Royal residence was once a simple house bought by King George III. Intended to make the house a palace, the King invested an unbelievably big sum of money in its rebuilding. Unfortunately, he died before the palace was finished and never got to enjoy the results of his efforts.
Upon claiming the throne and moving to the palace, the Queen ordered to renovate it. She was also the first monarch to appear on the Palace’s balcony. Years after her death, the Buckingham Palace still continues to be the royal residence, with the members of the royal family appearing on the balcony on certain events to honor the tradition.
7. The Queen became an assassination target for 8 times
The Queen’s carriage was attacked in 1840, 1842 and 1849, by different men trying to shoot her. The last of the attempts to kill the monarch was that of Roderick Maclean, who was proven to be insane. Even though none of the attempts to kill the Queen were successful, one of them left her with a black eye and a nasty scar.
8. Her passion for life disappeared after the death of her husband
The Queen’s husband, with whom she had the happiest moments of her life, died in December 1861. After his death, the Queen started wearing only black dresses so that to mourn him. During the 40 years without Prince Albert, she became quite reserved and was often called the Widow of Windsor, an interesting Queen Victoria fact.
The last years of the Queen’s life were filled with sadness and depression. Her health became worse as she suffered from rheumatism and could hardly see anything because of cataracts. She died in January 1901, with her son Edward (her successor on the throne) and her eldest grandson holding her hands at the deathbed.
We hope that the facts provided above will encourage you to learn more about the life and personality of Queen Victoria, one of the greatest monarchs of all the times.
I hope that this article on Queen Victoria facts was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Historical People Facts Page!