During the sixty-odd years of her reign, Queen Victoria gathered around her a household dedicated to her service. By following the lives of six members of her household - from governess to maid-of-honour, chaplain to personal physician - Serving Victoria offers a unique insight into the Victorian court with all its frustrations and absurdities.
Sitting squarely at its centre is Victoria, and through the eyes of her household we see a Queen who is more vulnerable, more emotional, more selfish and more comical than is generally supposed. A woman who was prone to fits of giggles, who wept easily and often, who gobbled her food and shrank from confrontation, while insisting on controlling the lives of those around her. Serving Victoria provides a glimpse of what it meant and what it was like to serve the Queen.
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2012 COSTA BIOGRAPHY AWARD
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"Entertaining…compellingly vivid... A fine examination of both the bizarre and the banal in the domestic machinery of Victoria's court" ( Observer)
"The rhythm of court life at Windsor or Balmoral is the backdrop to a rich human drama... [Hubbard's] achievement is to enter a sealed world, ruled by repetition, and make it compelling" ( Daily Telegraph)
"Eye-opening and compelling" ( Sunday Times)
"Having plundered a rich vein of fascinating and often new information, Hubbard shows that serving Victoria was no doddle" ( Daily Mail)
"An astonishing, lively and amusing account of the opinionated Queen and her odd entourage" (Christopher Hirst Independent)
A sparkling portrait of the court of Queen Victoria, seen through the lives of her household using never-seen-before diaries and letters.
Shortlisted for the 2012 Costa Biography Award
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Book Description HarperTorch, United States, 2013. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. 231 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. During her sixty-three-year reign, Queen Victoria gathered around herself a household dedicated to her service. For some, royal employment was the defining experience of their lives; for others it came as an unwelcome duty or as a prelude to greater things. Serving Victoria follows the lives of six members of her household, from the governess to the royal children, from her maid of honor to her chaplain and her personal physician.Drawing on their letters and diaries--many hitherto unpublished--Serving Victoria offers a unique insight into the Victorian court, with all its frustrations and absurdities, as well as the Queen herself, sitting squarely at its center. Seen through the eyes of her household as she traveled among Windsor, Osborne, and Balmoral, and to the French and Belgian courts, Victoria emerges as more vulnerable, more emotional, more selfish, more comical, than the austere figure depicted in her famous portraits. We see a woman who was prone to fits of giggles, who wept easily and often, who gobbled her food and shrank from confrontation but insisted on controlling the lives of those around her. We witness her extraordinary and debilitating grief at the death of her husband, Albert, and her sympathy toward the tragedies that afflicted her household.Witty, astute, and moving, Serving Victoria is a perfect foil to the pomp and circumstance--and prudery and conservatism--associated with Victoria s reign, and gives an unforgettable glimpse of what it meant to serve the Queen. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780062269911