Queen Victoria


     Queen Victoria, written by

Carolly Erickson, was a candid tale of the life of Victoria, a British queen
whose obstinate and pertinacious behavior helped to maintain England's
impenetrable reign over the rest of the world. Erickson aimed to prove that
women, such as Victoria, were entirely competent of governing themselves and
others, even though women were regarded as inferior and in need of male
supervision. The author successfully accomplished her purpose of depicting

Victoria in a positive light by imforming the reader of how she managed to
triumph over adversity despiite her callous upbringing. Princess Alexandria

Victoria was born on May 24, 1819, to the Duke and Duchess of Kent in Kensington

Palace. Unfortunately, the Duke passed away shortly after her birth. Therefore,

Victoria's upbringing was left in the hands of her avaricious and irascible
mother in the hands of her father's tyrannical equerry, Captain Conroy. With
only their own self-interests in mind, Victoria's care takers attempted to
deprive the young princess of her childhood by enforcing stringent rules and by
confining her to the palace. Her own relatives tired to deny her noteworthy
status of being third in line for the throne, and they publicly regarded her as
an intruder. However, there were, in fact, many favorable aspects of Victoria;s
childhood and adolescence. Victoria was taught the grace of dance and the beauty
of art in her childhood, and she learned to appreciate her future role as queen
through her extensive study of British history. She was quite a determined and
uncompromising young princess, and this attitude remained with her throughout
her reign as Queen of England. Soon after the death of King William IV, Princess

Victoria was crowned as queen at the legal age of eighteen. Queen Victoria
aspired to be a fit and upright ruler of England, and iwth the assistance of the

English government, Victoria was able to constitute order in all areas of her
empire. Her marriage to her cousin, Prince Albert of Sax-Coburg-Gotha, was very
advantageous and favorable for both Victoria and her empire. Albert privided the
emotional stability that Victoria required in that period of time, and he also
supplied England with his wonderful expertise in political and social issues.

Their marriage produced nine children who continued this English dynasty after
the death of their parents. Albert's tragic death had a detrimental impact on

Victoria's life because her husbands served as an emotional crutch for her, and
she suddenly felt overwhelmed by her responsibilities as queen. However, with
the guidance of her extraordinary prime ministers, Victoria was able to be
victorious in wars in Crimea an Prussia. Uner Victoria's rule, England was able
to assert its power over India, a country in which Victoria attempted to gain
popularity among its citizens. Queen Victoria also organized housing
arrangements for England's less fortunate citizens and medical care for the
workmen in England's factories. There were incessant disputes among the Whigs
and Tories in Parliament, which Victoria successfully ceased, and there were
difficulties concerning the British occupation of Sudan, Africa. However,

Victoria was able to overcome these hardships and to gain the admiration of her
kingdom. On January 22, 1901, Queen Victoria died at the age of eighty one,
leaving behind an empire that lamented over the death of such a remarkable
ruler. Carolly Erickson's biography of Queen Victoria provided an equitable
insight into Victoira's life as queen. Erickson supplied elaborate descriptions
of England's palaces and royal celebrations, allowing the reader to easily
envision these places and festivities. For example, the author described the

House of Windsor with a great deal of detail when writing, "Beyond the
magnificent furnishings, glowing tapestries, and fine paintings that adorned the
ancient castle's living quarters, there were riches brought from India, booty
taken from Tippoo Sahib, including a golden tiger's head and sparkling sculpted
peacock studded with rubies and emeralds." Furthermore, the author also
included excerpts from Victoria's private journal, which she maintained in the
years before and during her rule. These excerpts allowed the reader to view

Victoria with feelings of admiration and enderment. The reader was able to share
in Victoria's triumphs and tragedies and to understand the emotions that she
felt during certain episodes in her life. For instance, Victoria was terribly
grieved after the death of her beloved husband, and she felt as if she was
lacking part of her soal because of his untimely death. The readers gained an
insight into her pain when reading an excerpt from her journal in which she
said, "I stood up, kissing his dear heavenly forehead and called out in a
bitter agonizing cry: ‘Oh! my dear darling!' and then dropped on my knees in
mute, distracted despair, unable to utter a word or shed a tear." This
biography was a delight and pleasure to read because of these personal excerpts
taken from Victoria's private diary. Victoria often imparted information in the
entries of her journal, recounting her feelings toward some of her political
advisors. She once wrote of a dispute with one of her advisors and of her
animosity toward him. She said, "I pitched into him with a vehemence and
indignation-which was at any rate inspired by the British Lion-and he remaine
shrinking but still craven-hearted." These variety of excerpts added an
overall enjoyable quality to this masterpiece of a biography, which was very
difficult to put aside until the very end because it was vivid portrait of the
former empress. Erickson masterfully described Queen Victoria's positive and
negative traits in this well-written biography. The author showed that despite
her short and pauchy physique, Victoria was able to become a domineering figure
in England, leaving an everlasting mark on English society. Queen Victoria was a
determined, high-minded, and often ill-natured woman, yet these traits, which
seemed negative, were actually quite admirable. It was due to this obstinacy
that Victoria was able to assert here power over her empire. Queen Victoria was
the pride of England, and she was truly concerned for the well-being of her
nation because everything she did was for the love, glory, and honor of her
empire. Her Little Majesty: The Life of Queen Victoria was published in 1997 by

Simon and Schusterin, the United States of America. The author, Carollly

Erickson, is quite an accomplished and eminent biographer who has written eleven
highly acclaimed biogaphies while residing in here home in Hawaii. She is a
celebrated author whose biographies and histories have reached audiences all
around the world.