Prince Consort Essay
Although Victoria initially hesitated to involve her husband Prince Albert in matters of state, she eventually came to rely on his advice and counsel as much or more than that of any person in the government. Albert himself was intelligent and ambitious, and had definite opinions where politics was concerned. He more often than not sided with the Conservatives in the government, influencing the Queen to do the same in short time, and his understanding of international issues was much more highly developed than his young bride's.
Victoria and Albert were very happy with each other. Victoria gave birth to nine children into the world in a span of eighteen years. Their first child was the Princess Royal Victoria Adelaide Mary Louise, who was born on November twenty-one, She grew to be very pretty, intelligent, and talented, contrasting with the relative gracelessness of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, Albert Edward, and future King Edward VII, who was born November nine, Alice Maud Mary was born in Alfred Ernest Albert was born the following year, and was nicknamed "Affie". Helena Augusta Victoria was born in , and she was nicknamed "Lenchen." Louise Caroline Alberta was born in ; Arthur William Patrick, reputably the Queen's favorite son, was born in ; Leopold George Duncan, a hemophiliac, was born in The Queen's last child Beatrice Mary Victoria, nicknamed "Baby," was born in
Needless to say, Victoria spent much of her first two decades as queen in the state of pregnancy. In her diaries, she often complained about her pregnancies, and seemed to dislike infants. Albert, on the other hand, was very fond of the children as babies, though grew more distant, particularly from his sons, as they grew older. The royal children grew up under the watchful eye of their parents, and Victoria and Albert were very serious about their education, and were the first royal couple in England to send sons to Oxford and Cambridge. The Prince of Wales, however, hated college, and did not graduate after brief stints at both universities.
Desiring to get away from life at Buckingham Palace, which they often found unpleasant, Victoria bought Osborne House on the Isle of Wight in , and together with Albert made it what she called in her diary "a place of our own." Though grand in scale, it was modest and simple compared to her other royal residences, and Osborne House became a favorite retreat of the Queen and her family. Victoria and Albert were also very fond of the Scottish Highlands, and they bought Balmoral Castle in the northeast of Scotland in Life at Balmoral was comparatively unrefined for the royals, and the Queen enjoyed dressing her sons in kilts, drinking whiskey, and taking long walks through the Scottish hills. The Queen's predilection for Scotland set a trend, and tartans and bagpipes became extremely popular among the middle classes of Britain.
In a manner unlike any previous royal family, Victoria's endeared themselves to the growing middle classes of Britain because they were less distant from them in their manners and tastes. This was true not only in the royals' quiet home- life, relative thriftiness, and penchant for far-less magnificent architecture than had been traditional for British monarchs, but also in Victoria and Albert's support of middle-class pursuits such as industry, finance, and technological advancement. Albert, especially, became known as a great patron of such things throughout Britain, and he also took charge of redesigning the royal households according to more efficient, scientific models.
In , the Queen persuaded Parliament to officially grant Albert the title "Prince Consort." Parliament had been reluctant to grant such a title, but after seventeen years the Prince had established his position of influence in the government and alongside his sovereign Queen, and British officials felt comfortable granting the title. The matter of Albert's title had caused controversy for some time early in his marriage to Victoria. One reason for this controversy was that there had been very few precedents of a sovereign queen with a non-reigning husband at her side. In a time when it was nearly universally acknowledged that the husband was the master of his family and the wife vowed obedience to him in the wedding ceremony, many British people were perplexed over what role Albert, as husband, should play with his wife, who was legally his ruler.
In , Reginald M Phillips donated his award-winning collection of British Victorian stamps to the nation.
The former National Postal Museum was in part established to house the collection. Today, The Postal Museum has taken over responsibility for caring and developing access to the Phillips Collection.
The Phillips Collection is an essential resource for the understanding of postage stamps and philatelic research. It contains the worlds very first, first day cover that of the Penny Black. It also includes Treasury Essays for pre-paid postage, Rowland Hill letters and unique proofs and studies of stamps such as the Twopenny Blue and the Penny Red.
The Penny Black Changed the World project in supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund has allowed for all 45 volumes of the Phillips Collection to be digitised (pages that contain only text have not been digitised as the text is copied in the relevant catalogue entry).
How to use the Phillips Collection online
You can view the digitised albums by:
- Searching the catalogue directly. Enter a search term and enter POST (the archive POST class for the Phillips Collection) into the finding number box. This will limit your search to the Phillips Collection.
- Click the album links below. These are arranged by each volume created by RM Phillips:
- Volume I Pre documents and essays for adhesive postage stamps and postal stationery including Treasury Competition essays.
- Volume II essays and proofs of adhesive stamps and Mulready stationery, with Mulready stationery as issued.
- Volume III 1d unused.
- Volume IV 1d Plate 1 used.
- Volume V 1d black and 1d red plates 2, 3, 4 and 5 used.
- Volume VI 1d Plates 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11, used.
- Volume VII 2d blue, plates 1 and 2, unused and used.
- Volume VIII colour, paper and cancellation experiments including rainbow trials.
- Volume IX Mulready stationery and other printed envelopes.
- Volume X 1d black used on covers.
- Volume XI cancellations on imperforate line-engraved.
- Volume XII cancellations on line-engraved.
- Volume XIII 1d imprimaturs.
- Volume XIV imperforate 1d red unused, with some perforated used examples.
- Volume XV imperforate 1d red used.
- Volume XVI imperforate 1d used (continued).
- Volume XVII 1d used on covers.
- Volume XVIII imperforate 2d blue plates III and IV unused and used.
- Volume XIX 2d Plate 4 unused and used.
- Volume XX imperforate 2d plates III and IV used on covers or piece.
- Volume XXI line-engraved essays and proofs.
- Volume XXII trial separations, including rouletting, comb perforation and experimental perforation; Prince Consort essays; perforated line-engraved 1d and 2d unused; imperforate varieties used.
- Volume XXIII line-engraved 1d red perforation 16 and perforation 14 used.
- Volume XXIV 2d plates IV, V and VI used.
- Volume XXV 1d rose-red, die II, alphabet III, perforated, unused and used.
- Volume XXVI 1d rose-red, die II, Alphabet II, Reserve Plates 15 and 16 and Alphabet III, Reserve Plate 17, mostly used.
- Volume XXVII 1d rose-red, Alphabet IV, Plates 50 and 51, mostly used.
- Volume XXVIII 1d red inscribed with plate numbers, mostly imprimaturs and unused multiples.
- Volume XXIX 2d, ½d and 1½d imprimaturs, unissued stamps and the issued stamps unused and used.
- Volume XXX embossed adhesive stamps, essays, proofs and the issued 1/-, 10d and 6d unused and used; embossed postal stationery proofs and as issued.
- Volume XXXI surface printed essays, proofs, imprimaturs and specimens.
- Volume XXXII 3d to 1/- values, essays, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused.
- Volume XXXIII 1/- and 2/-, 2/- brown, 6d and 2½d, 3d and 6d, essays, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused.
- Volume XXXIV 1/-, 4d and 8d values, essays for 9d, 10d and 2/- values and 3d to 1/- values, essays, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused.
- Volume XXXV surface printed values to 2/- used including rare abnormals and 1/- Stock Exchange forgeries.
- Volume XXXVI 5/- to £5 values, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused and used.
- Volume XXXVII Consolidated Contract, essays for the low values, proofs and imprimaturs and the issued ½d to 5d stamps unused.
- Volume XXXVIII schemes for improved stamp designs.
- Volume XXXIX Unified 1d and 2/6 to £1 (also £1 green), proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused and used including broken frame varieties of the £1.
- Volume XL Unified 1½d to 1/-, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens, unissued stamps and the issued stamps, mostly unused.
- Volume XLI ½d to 1/-, essays, proofs, imprimaturs, specimens and the issued stamps unused; reply stamp essays; King Edward VII essays.
- Volume XLII ½d to 1/-, unused multiples showing marginal markings.
- Volume XLIII Postal Fiscals, Railway Letter and Parcel Post stamps, essays, proofs and as issued [newly written up in s].
- Volume XLIV Private Companies and Post Office Telegraph stamps, Military and Army Telegraph stamps, proofs, specimens and as issued; De La Rue dummy stamps.
- Volume XLV Postage and Revenue stamps overprinted SPECIMEN.
- Engine Turning A sheet showing specimens of engine-turned backgrounds, numbered 1 to 28, inscribed Perkins, Fairman and Heath.
- Silver Wyon Medal The Wyon medal in silver.
- Bronze Wyon Medal The Wyon medal in bronze.