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Victoria

Geburtstag: 24. Mai 1819
Todesdatum: 22. Januar 1901

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Victoria – gebürtig Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent – war von 1837 bis 1901 Königin des Vereinigten Königreichs von Großbritannien und Irland, ab dem 1. Mai 1876 trug sie als erste britische Monarchin zusätzlich den Titel Kaiserin von Indien .

Mit der Thronbesteigung Victorias am 20. Juni 1837 endete aufgrund des im Königreich Hannover geltenden Salischen Gesetzes, das Frauen von der Thronfolge ausschloss, die seit 1714 bestehende Personalunion zwischen Großbritannien und Hannover. Während der folgenden 63-jährigen Regierungszeit Victorias erreichte das Britische Empire den Höhepunkt seiner politischen und ökonomischen Macht, die Ober- und Mittelschichten erlebten eine beispiellose wirtschaftliche Blütezeit . Prägend für ihre Regentschaft waren der Einfluss ihres Ehemannes Albert von Sachsen-Coburg und Gotha sowie ihr nahezu vollständiger Rückzug aus der Öffentlichkeit nach dessen Tod 1861. Insgesamt interpretierte Victoria ihre Rolle als konstitutionelle Monarchin sehr eigenwillig und durchaus selbstbewusst.

Mit einer Regierungszeit von insgesamt 63 Jahren, sieben Monaten und zwei Tagen war Victoria die am längsten amtierende britische Monarchin, ehe sie am 9. September 2015 von Elisabeth II. übertroffen wurde. Aufgrund ihrer zahlreichen Nachkommen erhielt sie den Beinamen „Großmutter Europas“; sie ist beispielsweise sowohl Ururgroßmutter der aktuellen Königin Elisabeth II. als auch von deren Ehemann Prinzgemahl Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

Der Tod Victorias beendete die Herrschaft des Hauses Hannover, die mit der Thronübernahme ihres ältesten Sohnes Eduard VII. auf das Haus Sachsen-Coburg und Gotha überging .

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Zitate Victoria

„I will be good.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
Allegedly, 11-year-old Victoria's spoken response in 1830 when her governess let her know that one day she would be Queen. As discussed in Becoming Victoria by Lynne Vallone (2001) on p. 44 http://books.google.com/books?id=qFOPtHFpmAYC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA44#v=onepage&q&f=false-45, "the anecdote survives in a number of competing versions", some aspects of which the author calls "dubious". And as mentioned on p. 45, Victoria's own recollection of learning she would someday become Queen was "I cried much on learning it—& even deplored this contingency".

„Since it has pleased Providence to place me in this station, I shall do my utmost to fulfil my duty towards my country;“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
Context: Since it has pleased Providence to place me in this station, I shall do my utmost to fulfil my duty towards my country; I am very young and perhaps in many, though not in all things, inexperienced, but I am sure that very few have more real good will and more real desire to do what is fit and right than I have. Extract from the Queen's Journal, Tuesday, 20th June 1837.

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„It is worth being shot at to see how much one is loved.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
After being shot at by Roderick Maclean on 2 March 1882, as quoted in Stanley Weintraub, Victoria. Biography of a queen (1987), p. 450.

„It seems to me a defect in our much famed Constitution, to have to part with an admirable Govt like Ld Salisbury's for no question of any importance or any particular reason, merely on account of the number of votes.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
Comment made after Salisbury lost power to Gladstone in 1892, quoted in Queen Victoria: A Biographical Companion by Helen Rappaport (2003), p. 331 http://books.google.com/books?id=NLGhimIiFPoC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA331#v=onepage&q&f=false.

„Affairs go on, and all will take some shape or other, but it keeps one in hot water all the time.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
Letter to King of the Belgians, Nuneham, 15th June, 1841 (Note: Nuneham was the house of Edward Vernon Harcourt, Archbishop of York).

„All marriage is such a lottery -- the happiness is always an exchange -- though it may be a very happy one -- still the poor woman is bodily and morally the husband's slave. That always sticks in my throat. When I think of a merry, happy, and free young girl -- and look at the ailing aching state a young wife is generally doomed to -- which you can't deny is the penalty of marriage.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
Letter (16 May 1860), published in Dearest Child: Letters Between Queen Victoria and the Princess Royal Previously Unpublished edited by Roger Fulfold (1964), p. 254. Also quoted in the article "Queen Victoria's Not So Victorian Writings" http://www.victoriana.com/doors/queenvictoria.htm by Heather Palmer (1997).

„Bolivia does not exist.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
On discovering that Bolivia is landlocked and its capital lay high in the mountains, having ordered the Royal Navy to bombard it. This anecdote is recounted in a few published sources such as The Rough Guide to Bolivia by James Read (2002), but no scholarly historical sources have been located.

„I am most anxious to enlist everyone who can speak or write to join in checking this mad, wicked folly of "Women's Rights," with all its attendant horrors… Were women to "unsex" themselves by claiming equality with men, they would become the most hateful, heathen, and disgusting of beings and would surely perish without male protection.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
In an 1870 letter, quoted for example in All For Love: Seven Centuries of Illicit Liaison by Val Horsler (2006), p. 104 http://books.google.com/books?id=PFyvAAAAIAAJ&q=%22most+anxious+to+enlist%22#search_anchor. At the bottom of this page http://www.historyofwomen.org/suffrage.html, it is mentioned that the comment was written in a letter to Sir Theodore Martin in reaction to news "that Viscountess Amberley had become president of the Bristol and West of England Women's Suffrage Society and had addressed a ... public meeting on the subject." The author of the page, Helena Wojtczak, says here http://www.historyofwomen.org/about.html that while other sources often fail to give the context, she "researched and discovered the source of the quote".

„We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat; they do not exist.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
December 1899 letter to Arthur Balfour during the "Black Week" of the Boer War, as quoted in The Columbia Dictionary of Quotations (1993), p. 539 http://books.google.com/books?id=4cl5c4T9LWkC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA539#v=onepage&q&f=false. According to Lady Gwendolen Cecil, it was a verbal statement to Mr. Balfour in Windsor Palace, as recorded in her biography of her Father, Life of Robert, marquis of Salisbury, volume 3 (1921), p. 191 http://archive.org/stream/lifeofrobertmarq03ceciuoft#page/190/mode/2up/search/we+are+not+interested+in+the+possibilities+of+defeat

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„We are not amused.“

—  Victoria of the United Kingdom
This quotation is attributed to Victoria, with varying stories. In Caroline Holland's Notebooks of a Spinster Lady, published in 1919, the story is put without clear details: "Her remarks can freeze as well as crystallise. There is a tale of the unfortunate equerry who ventured during dinner at Windsor to tell a story with a spice of scandal or impropriety in it. "We are not amused," said the Queen when he had finished" http://www.archive.org/stream/cu31924028287195#page/n279/mode/2up.Other stories describe it as a saying after viewing a production of Gilbert and Sullivan's HMS Pinafore An interview with Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone in 1976 states that the Princess asked her grandmother about this quotation and that Victoria said that she had never said the famous phrase (see the clip at 5:56 in this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qS4hAbHLszw, from the 2001 BBC program Reel Victorians: Nineties Girls http://ftvdb.bfi.org.uk/sift/title/698971; the clip is from an interview that originally aired in the 1977 BBC program Royal Heritage: Victoria, Queen and Empress - The Princess Alice Interview http://ftvdb.bfi.org.uk/sift/title/746389).

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