Alexandria Victoria (24 May 1819-22 January 1901) and Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emmanuel (26 August 1819 – 14 December 1861) were married just over 20 years and had nine children together (five daughters and four sons).  Prince Albert was the love of the Queen's life.  He was also her first cousin, since his father and her mother were siblings and were both German.   Albert sought Victoria's attention from afar for years--even before she was crowned queen at the age of 18.   After a couple of in person visits, she eventually became smitten with him and decided to propose to him.  She had to do the proposing because she was then the queen.

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were known for having a rocky love affair.  First there was the queen's fiery temper.  Then there were her mixed feelings about being a mother and needing to rely on her husband to keep up her duties as sovereign. Nonetheless, their bond grew incredibly strong over the years, and the queen was launched into an intense and protracted state of sorrow upon Prince Albert's death in 1861--at a mere 42 years of age.


Julia Baird,

Victoria: The Queen: An Intimate Biography of the Woman Who Ruled an Empire,

Random House; 1st Edition edition (November 22, 2016),

ISBN 1400069882

We are very fortunate to have an excellent biography of Victoria for our class. Julia Baird has written a masterpiece of a biography about this fascinating and complicated woman. I can tell you that you will love it. The author discovered the real Victoria as opposed to the cartoon character. It is a great book but also a great read. Once you start, you will never want to put it down. The family, the mother, the husband (Oh my god! What a husband!) the tyrants trying to order her around. It is all here and all I can say is: watch out for the next book by Julia Baird. Also nice is the audible version of this book read very well by a lovely British voice lady. If you decide to buy your own copy of this book, buy the new hardcover. It costs less than a new paperback.

“Victoria the Queen, Julia Baird’s exquisitely wrought and meticulously researched biography, brushes the dusty myth off this extraordinary monarch. Right out of the gate, the book thrums with authority as Baird builds her portrayal of Victoria. Overturning stereotypes, she rips this queen down to the studs and creates her anew. . . . Baird’s Victoria isn’t the woman we expect to meet. Her queen is a pure iconoclast: emotional, demonstrative, sexual and driven. . . . Baird writes in the round. She constructs a dynamic historical figure, then spins out a spherical world of elegant reference, anchoring the narrative in specific detail and pinning down complex swaths of history that, in less capable hands, would simply blow away.”—The New York Times Book Review

“In this in-depth look at a feminist before her time, you’ll balk at, cheer on, and mourn the obstacles in the life of the teen queen who grew into her throne.”—Marie Claire

Christopher Hibbert,

Life in Victorian England,

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 31, 2016),

ISBN 1541383559

This wonderful book by Christopher Hibbert will be useful to us all year. Hibbert is one of greatest "popular" historians, meaning that he writes books you want to read. Many of you have used his great one-volume history of the Medici as well as his excellent History of Rome, History of Florence, and History of Venice.Many of us used his excellent biography of Mussolini last year in the Modern Italy class. IN this book, Hibbert takes us all through Victorian society. We have not made it "required" but we are sure you will enjoy it if you buy it and read it.

Gillian Gill,

We Two: Victoria and Albert: Rulers, Partners, Rivals,

Ballantine Books (November 30, 2009),

ISBN 0345520017

Richard Evans,

The Pursuit of Power: Europe 1815-1914,


ISBN 0670024570