Princess Alice of the United Kingdom
Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine, was the Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine from 1877-1878. She was the third child and second daughter of Prince Albert. Alice was the first of Queen Victoria's nine children to die, one of three to be outlived by their mother, who died in 1901. Alice spent her early childhood in the company of her parents and siblings, travelling between the British royal residences, her education was devised by Albert's close friend and adviser, Baron Stockmar, included practical activities like needlework and woodwork and languages like French and German. When her father, Prince Albert, became fatally ill in December 1861, Alice nursed him until his death. Following his death, Queen Victoria entered a period of intense mourning and Alice spent the next six months acting as her mother's unofficial secretary. On 1 July 1862, while the court was still at the height of mourning, Alice married the minor German Prince Louis of Hesse, heir to the Grand Duchy of Hesse.
The ceremony—conducted and with unrelieved gloom at Osborne House—was described by the Queen as "more of a funeral than a wedding". The Princess's life in Darmstadt was unhappy as a result of impoverishment, family tragedy and worsening relations with her husband and mother. Alice was a prolific patron of women's causes and showed an interest in nursing the work of Florence Nightingale; when Hesse became involved in the Austro-Prussian War, Darmstadt filled with the injured. One of her organisations, the Princess Alice Women's Guild, took over much of the day-to-day running of the state's military hospitals; as a result of this activity, Queen Victoria became concerned about Alice's directness about medical and, in particular, matters. In 1871, she wrote to Alice's younger sister, Princess Louise, who had married: "Don't let Alice pump you. Be silent and cautious about your'interior'". In 1877, Alice became Grand Duchess upon the accession of her husband, her increased duties putting further strains on her health.
In late 1878, diphtheria infected the Hessian court. Alice nursed her family for over a month before dying late that year. Princess Alice was the mother of Tsaritsa Alexandra Feodorovna of Russia, maternal grandmother of Louis Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma, maternal great-grandmother of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Another daughter, who married Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich of Russia, like the tsaritsa and her family, killed by the Bolsheviks in 1918. Alice was born on 25 April 1843 at Buckingham Palace in London, she was the second daughter and third child of Queen Victoria, her husband Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. She was christened "Alice Maud Mary" in the private chapel at Buckingham Palace by The Archbishop of Canterbury, William Howley, on 2 June 1843. "Maud", the Anglo-Saxon name for Matilda, was chosen in honour of one of Alice's godparents, Princess Sophia Matilda of Gloucester, a niece of King George III. "Mary" was chosen because Alice was born on the same day as her maternal great-aunt, the Duchess of Gloucester.
Her gender was greeted with mixed feelings from the public, the Privy Council sent a message to Albert expressing its "congratulation and condolence" on the birth of a second daughter. Her godparents were the King of Hanover, the Princess of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, the Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Princess Sophia Matilda of Gloucester. Alice's birth prompted her parents to find a larger family home. Buckingham Palace was not equipped with the private apartments that Victoria's growing family needed, including suitable nurseries. Therefore, in 1844, Victoria and Albert purchased Osborne House on the Isle of Wight as a family holiday home. Alice's education was devised by his close friend, Baron Stockmar. At Osborne and her siblings were taught practical skills such as housekeeping, cooking and carpentry, as well as daily lessons in English and German. Victoria and Albert favoured a monarchy based on family values. Alice was fascinated with the world outside the Royal Household. On one occasion, she escaped from her governess at the chapel at Windsor Castle and sat in a public pew, so she could better understand people who were not strict adherents to royal protocol.
In 1854, during the Crimean War, the eleven-year-old Alice toured London hospitals for wounded soldiers with her mother and her eldest sister. She was the most sensitive of her siblings and was sympathetic to other people's burdens, possessing a sharp tongue and an triggered temper. In her childhood, Alice formed a close relationship with her brother, the Prince of Wales, her eldest sister, The Princess Royal. Victoria's marriage to Prince Frederick of Prussia in 1858 upset her. Alice's compassion for other people's suffering established her role as the family caregiver in 1861, her maternal grandmother Victoria, Duchess of Kent, died at Frogmore on 16 March 1861. Alice had spent much of her time at her grandmother's side played the piano for her in Frogmore's draw
Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Medal
The Diamond Jubilee Medal was instituted in 1897 by Royal Warrant as a British decoration. The medal was awarded to members of the Royal Family and the court and dignitaries present at the celebrations of Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee and to selected soldiers and sailors who formed the jubilee parade in London; the Medal followed the Golden Jubilee Medal, issued ten years both in terms of design and award criteria, with those qualifying for both medals receiving a ribbon clasp in lieu of a second medal. The medal was awarded to those involved in the official celebrations of Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee, including members of the Royal Family, Royal Household and government officials, as well as Envoys, Foreign Ambassadors and Colonial Prime Ministers. Military recipients included selected officers and soldiers of the Royal Navy and Army, the Indian and colonial contingents, that participated in jubilee activities, including the London procession in which the Queen took part. Three types of medal were awarded: Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee Medal.
Awarded in gold to members of the Royal Family, silver to officers and those of similar status, bronze to selected other ranks who took part in the jubilee parade. A special diamond shaped medal for mayors and provosts, presented in gold to lord mayors and lord provosts and silver to mayors and provosts from across the United Kingdom. A Police Diamond Jubilee Medal of a different design was awarded to those on duty during the jubilee celebrations. Please see separate article. Other members of the Commonwealth struck their own versions of the medal, albeit not sanctioned for wear; the Government of Ceylon in particular is notable for the medals they struck in 14-carat gold and silver, awarded to senior members of government and local officials. The Diamond Jubilee Medal followed the design of Golden Jubilee Medal, it measures 30 millimetres in diameter. On the obverse Queen Victoria is depicted crowned and wearing a veil which falls over the back of the head and neck, with the text VICTORIA D. G.
REGINA ET IMPERATRIX F. D.. The reverse bears the words IN COMMEMORATION OF THE 60TH YEAR OF THE REIGN OF QUEEN VICTORIA · 20 JUNE 1897 within a garland of roses and thistles; the medal was designed by Clemens Emptmayer, with the portrait of Queen Victoria based on a design by Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm. The ribbon is garter blue with wide white stripes towards each edge. Holders of the 1887 medal who qualified were awarded a bar inscribed'1897' and surmounted by a crown, to be attached to the ribbon of the existing medal; the medal for mayors and provosts is a lozenge, 40 by 48 millimetres, bearing a trefoil pattern, with a circular centre that depicts the portrait of the older Queen on the obverse, with the young Queen on the reverse. The ribbon follows that of the standard medal; the medal of Admiral of the Fleet, Earl David Beatty in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich on collections.rmg.co.uk The medal of Richard Seddon, premier of New Zealand in the Museum of New Zealand on collections.tepapa.govt.nz
Sir George Hayter was a notable English painter, specialising in portraits and large works involving in some cases several hundred individual portraits. Queen Victoria appreciated his merits and appointed Hayter her Principal Painter in Ordinary and awarded him a Knighthood 1841. Hayter was the son of Charles Hayter, a miniature painter and popular drawing-master and teacher of perspective, appointed Professor of Perspective and Drawing to Princess Charlotte and published a well-known introduction to perspective and other works. Tutored by his father, he went to the Royal Academy Schools early in 1808, but in the same year, after a disagreement about his art studies, ran away to sea as a Midshipman in the Royal Navy, his father secured his release, they came to an agreement that Hayter should assist him while pursuing his own studies. In 1809 he secretly married Sarah Milton, a lodger at his father's house, the arrangement remaining secret until around 1811. Together they had three children Georgiana and Henry.
At the Royal Academy Schools he studied under Fuseli, in 1815 was appointed Painter of Miniatures and Portraits by Princess Charlotte. Hayter was awarded the British Institution’s premium for history painting for the Prophet Ezra, purchased by Richard Payne Knight. Around 1816 his wife left him, for reasons, he subsequently began a relationship with Louisa Cauty, daughter of Sir William Cauty, with whom he lived for the next decade and who bore him two children and Louisa. Encouraged by his patron, John Russell, 6th Duke of Bedford, he travelled to Italy to study in 1816. There he met Canova, whose studio he attended while painting his portrait, where he absorbed Canova’s classical style, he is believed to have learned sculpture from Canova at this time. Canova was Perpetual Principal of the Accademia di San Luca and doubtless put Hayter forward for honorary membership on the strength of his painting ‘The Tribute Money’, favourably received in Rome. Hayter thereby became the Academy's youngest member.
Returning to London in 1818, Hayter practised as a portrait painter in oils and history painter. Dubbed ‘The Phoenix’ by William Beckford, Hayter showed a pomposity that irritated his fellow artists, but he mixed with many aristocratic families, his unconventional domestic life set him apart from official Academy circles: he was never elected to the Royal Academy. Hayter was innovative during the 1820s. George Agar-Ellis commissioned the Trial of Queen Caroline in the House of Lords in 1820. In the Trial of William, Lord Russell, in the Old Bailey in 1683 Hayter celebrated John Russell’s ancestry, in a work reminiscent of fashionable tableaux vivants of the country-house set. In 1826 Hayter settled in Italy; the Banditti of Kurdistan Assisting Georgians in Carrying off Circassian Women, completed in Florence for John Proby, 1st Earl of Carysfort, demonstrated Hayter’s assimilation of the style and exotic subject-matter of contemporary French Romantic art. In 1827 his mistress, Louisa Cauty, died after poisoning herself with arsenic.
Although it was an accident, in a bid for attention, it was assumed that he had driven her to suicide, he was forced by the scandal to move from Florence to Rome. By late 1828 he was in Paris, where his portraits of English society members were stylistically akin to the work of recent French portrait painters such as François Gérard. In 1831 Hayter returned to England, his grandiose plan to paint the first sitting after the passage of the Reform Bill resulted in his painting Moving the Address to the Crown on the Opening of the First Reformed Parliament in the Old House of Commons, 5 February 1833, for which he executed nearly 400 portrait studies in oil. Hayter was an ardent supporter of the reform movement and this painting was not commissioned but to all intents and purposes a labour of love, it occupied him for ten years with no guarantee of financial reward. This is one of the last images executed of the interior of the old House of Commons before its destruction in the fire of 1834; the painting was purchased by the government for the nation in 1854, 20 years after it was started.
Having painted the young Princess Victoria, Hayter was not a surprising choice as the new Queen’s'Portrait and Historical Painter'. But on the death of Sir David Wilkie in 1841 Hayter's appointment as Principal Painter in Ordinary to the Queen caused some annoyance at the Royal Academy as this appointment had been the preserve of the President Sir Martin Archer Shee. In 1842 Hayter was knighted, he painted several royal ceremonies including Queen Victoria’s coronation of 1838 and marriage of 1840 and the Christening of the Prince of Wales of 1843. He painted several royal portraits including his most well known work the State Portrait of the new Queen Victoria. Several versions of this portrait were done, with the assistance of the artist's son Angelo, to be sent as diplomatic gifts. Hayter's active period at court was short-lived however, because Albert preferred German painters suc
Albert, Prince Consort
Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha was the husband of Queen Victoria. He was born in the Saxon duchy of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, to a family connected to many of Europe's ruling monarchs. At the age of 20, he married Queen Victoria, he felt constrained by his role of prince consort, which did not afford him power or responsibilities. He developed a reputation for supporting public causes, such as educational reform and the abolition of slavery worldwide, was entrusted with running the Queen's household and estates, he was involved with the organisation of the Great Exhibition of 1851, a resounding success. Victoria came to depend more on his support and guidance, he aided the development of Britain's constitutional monarchy by persuading his wife to be less partisan in her dealings with Parliament—although he disagreed with the interventionist foreign policy pursued during Lord Palmerston's tenure as Foreign Secretary. Albert died at the young age of 42. Victoria was so devastated at the loss of her husband that she entered into a deep state of mourning and wore black for the rest of her life.
On her death in 1901, their eldest son succeeded as Edward VII, the first British monarch of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, named after the ducal house to which Albert belonged. Albert was born at Schloss Rosenau, near Coburg, the second son of Ernest III, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, his first wife, Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. Albert's future wife, was born earlier in the same year with the assistance of the same midwife, Charlotte von Siebold. Albert was baptised into the Lutheran Evangelical Church on 19 September 1819 in the Marble Hall at Schloss Rosenau with water taken from the local river, the Itz, his godparents were the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. In 1825, Albert's great-uncle, Frederick IV, Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg, died, his death led to a realignment of Saxon duchies the following year and Albert's father became the first reigning duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Albert and his elder brother, spent their youth in a close companionship marred by their parents' turbulent marriage and eventual separation and divorce.
After their mother was exiled from court in 1824, she married her lover, Alexander von Hanstein, Count of Polzig and Beiersdorf. She never saw her children again, died of cancer at the age of 30 in 1831; the following year, their father married his sons' cousin Princess Marie of Württemberg. The brothers were educated at home by Christoph Florschütz and studied in Brussels, where Adolphe Quetelet was one of their tutors. Like many other German princes, Albert attended the University of Bonn, where he studied law, political economy and the history of art, he played music and excelled at sport fencing and riding. His tutors at Bonn included the poet Schlegel; the idea of marriage between Albert and his cousin, was first documented in an 1821 letter from his paternal grandmother, the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, who said that he was "the pendant to the pretty cousin". By 1836, this idea had arisen in the mind of their ambitious uncle Leopold, King of the Belgians since 1831. At this time, Victoria was the heir presumptive to the British throne.
Her father, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III, had died when she was a baby, her elderly uncle, King William IV, had no legitimate children. Her mother, the Duchess of Kent, was the sister of both Albert's father—the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha—and King Leopold. Leopold arranged for his sister, Victoria's mother, to invite the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and his two sons to visit her in May 1836, with the purpose of meeting Victoria. William IV, disapproved of any match with the Coburgs, instead favoured the suit of Prince Alexander, second son of the Prince of Orange. Victoria was well aware of the various matrimonial plans and critically appraised a parade of eligible princes, she wrote, " is handsome. Alexander, on the other hand, she described as "very plain". Victoria wrote to her uncle Leopold to thank him "for the prospect of great happiness you have contributed to give me, in the person of dear Albert... He possesses every quality that could be desired to render me happy."
Although the parties did not undertake a formal engagement, both the family and their retainers assumed that the match would take place. Victoria came to the throne aged eighteen on 20 June 1837, her letters of the time show interest in Albert's education for the role he would have to play, although she resisted attempts to rush her into marriage. In the winter of 1838–39, the prince visited Italy, accompanied by the Coburg family's confidential adviser, Baron Stockmar. Albert returned to the United Kingdom with Ernest in October 1839 to visit the Queen, with the objective of settling the marriage. Albert and Victoria felt mutual affection and the Queen proposed to him on 15 October 1839. Victoria's intention to marry was declared formally to the Privy Council on 23 November, the couple married on
Victorian morality is a distillation of the moral views of people living during the time of Queen Victoria's reign, the Victorian era, of the moral climate of Great Britain in the mid-19th century in general. The British sought to bring these values to the British Empire. Historian Harold Perkin writes: Between 1780 and 1850 the English ceased to be one of the most aggressive, rowdy, riotous and bloodthirsty nations in the world and became one of the most inhibited, orderly, tender-minded and hypocritical; the transformation diminished cruelty to animals, criminals and children. Victorian values reached all facets of Victorian living; the values of the period—which can be classed as religion, Evangelicalism, industrial work ethic, personal improvement—took root in Victorian morality. Current plays and all literature—including old classics like Shakespeare—were cleansed of naughtiness, or "bowdlerized." Contemporary historians have come to regard the Victorian era as a time of many conflicts, such as the widespread cultivation of an outward appearance of dignity and restraint, together with serious debates about how the new morality should be implemented.
The international slave trade was abolished, this ban was enforced by the Royal Navy. Slavery was ended in all the British colonies, child labour was ended in British factories, a long debate ensued regarding whether prostitution should be abolished or regulated. Homosexuality remained illegal; as of the turn of the 21st century, the term "Victorian morality" can describe any set of values that espouse sexual restraint, low tolerance of crime and a strict social code of conduct. Opposition to slavery was the main evangelical cause from the late 18th century, led by William Wilberforce; the cause organized thoroughly, developed propaganda campaigns that made readers cringe at the horrors of slavery. The same moral fervor and organizational skills carried over into most of the other reform movements. Victoria ascended to the throne in 1837, only four years after the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire; the anti-slavery movement had campaigned for years to achieve the ban, succeeding with a partial abolition in 1807 and the full ban on slave trade, but not slave ownership, which only happened in 1833.
It took so long because the anti-slavery morality was pitted against powerful economic interests which claimed their businesses would be destroyed if they were not permitted to exploit slave labour. Plantation owners in the Caribbean received £20 million in cash compensation, which reflected the average market price of slaves. William E. Gladstone a famous reformer, handled the large payments to his father for their hundreds of slaves; the Royal Navy patrolled the Atlantic Ocean, stopping any ships that it suspected of trading African slaves to the Americas and freeing any slaves found. The British had set up a Crown Colony in West Africa—Sierra Leone—and transported freed slaves there. Freed slaves from Nova Scotia founded and named the capital of Sierra Leone "Freetown". William Wilberforce, Thomas Fowell Buxton and Richard Martin introduced the first legislation to prevent cruelty to animals, the Cruel Treatment of Cattle Act 1822. In the Metropolitan Police Act 1839 "fighting or baiting Lions, Badgers, Dogs, or other Animals" was made a criminal offence.
The law laid numerous restrictions on how and where animals could be used. It prohibited owners from letting mad dogs run loose and gave police the right to destroy any dog suspected of being rabid, it prohibited the use of dogs for drawing carts. The law was extended to the rest of England and Wales in 1854. Dog-pulled carts were used by poor self-employed men as a cheap means to deliver milk, human foods, animal foods, for collecting refuse; the dogs were susceptible to rabies. They bothered the horses, which were economically much more vital to the city. Evangelicals and utilitarians in the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals persuaded Parliament it was cruel and should be illegal; the owners had no more use for their dogs, killed them. Cart dogs were replaced by people with handcarts. Evangelical religious forces took the lead in identifying the evils of child labor, legislating against them, they were angered at the contradiction between the conditions on the ground for children of the poor and the middle-class notion of childhood as a time of innocence led to the first campaigns for the imposition of legal protection for children.
Reformers attacked child labor from the 1830s onward. The campaign that led to the Factory Acts was spearheaded by rich philanthropists of the era Lord Shaftesbury, who introduced bills in Parliament to mitigate the exploitation of children at the workplace. In 1833 he introduced the Ten Hours Act 1833, which provided that children working in the cotton and woollen mills must be aged nine or above; the Factory Act of
Wedding dress of Queen Victoria
The wedding dress of Queen Victoria was worn by Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom, at her wedding to Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha on 10 February 1840. She selected a white dress, considered an unusual choice at a time when colours were more usual, made from heavy silk satin; the Honiton lace used for her wedding dress proved an important boost to Devon lace-making. Queen Victoria has been credited with starting the tradition of white weddings and white bridal gowns, although she was not the first royal to be married in white; the lace was designed by William Dyce, head of the Government School of Design, mounted on a white satin dress made by Mary Bettans. The plain, cream-coloured satin gown was made from fabric woven in Spitalfields, east London, trimmed with a deep flounce and trimmings of lace hand-made in Honiton and Beer, in Devon; this demonstrated support for English industry the cottage industry for lace. The handmade lace motifs were appliquéd onto cotton machine-made net.
Orange flower blossoms, a symbol of fertility trimmed the dress and made up a wreath, which Victoria wore instead of a tiara over her veil. The veil, which matched the flounce of the dress, was four yards in length and 0.75 yards wide. Victoria's jewellery consisted of a necklace and earrings made up of diamonds presented to her by the Sultan of Turkey, a sapphire cluster brooch given to her by Albert a day earlier; the slippers she wore matched the white colour of the dress. The train of the dress, carried by her bridesmaids, measured 18 feet in length. Queen Victoria described her choice of dress in her journal thus: "I wore a white satin dress, with a deep flounce of Honiton lace, an imitation of an old design. My jewels were my Turkish diamond necklace & earrings & dear Albert's beautiful sapphire brooch." While photography existed in 1840, the techniques were not yet developed. A series of photographs taken by Roger Fenton on 11 May 1854 of Victoria and Albert are described as wedding or reenactment photographs, with the dress identified as her wedding dress.
The Royal Collection has refuted these interpretations, stating that the images are the first photographs to show Victoria as a queen, rather than as a wife or mother, that she and Albert are wearing court dress. In 1847, Victoria commissioned Franz Xaver Winterhalter to paint a portrait of her wearing her wedding clothes as an anniversary present for Prince Albert; the portrait was copied as an enamel miniature by John Haslem. Victoria revisited the lace-makers to create the christening gown worn by her children, including Albert Edward, the future Edward VII; this gown was worn for the christening of all subsequent Royal babies until the baptism of James, Viscount Severn in 2008, when a replica was used for the first time. As a mark of support for the Honiton industry, in addition to wearing their lace on her and her children's clothes, Victoria insisted her daughters order Honiton lace for their wedding dresses. Victoria wore her wedding lace mounted on the dresses she wore to the christenings of her nine children.
She wore it to the weddings of two of her children, her eldest daughter, Victoria, in 1858, her youngest son, Leopold, in 1882. Her youngest daughter, Princess Beatrice, was permitted to wear it as part of her wedding gown in 1885. Victoria wore the lace to the wedding of her grandson George to Mary of Teck in 1893, for her Diamond Jubilee official photograph in 1897; when Victoria died, she was buried with her wedding veil over her face. In 2012 it was reported that while the dress itself had been conserved and displayed at Kensington Palace that year, the lace was now too fragile to move from storage. Wearing white was adopted by wealthy, fashionable brides. Less than a decade Godey's Lady's Book would incorrectly claim that white wedding gowns were an ancient custom reflecting a bride's virginity, writing "Custom has decided, from the earliest ages, that white is the most fitting hue, whatever may be the material, it is an emblem of the purity and innocence of girlhood, the unsullied heart she now yields to the chosen one" though white had been a distinctly uncommon choice for bridal gowns before Victoria's wedding and was not chosen by a majority of brides until decades later.
Following the 2011 wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton, comparisons were drawn between the bride's white wedding dress and Queen Victoria's own. BBC audio slideshow featuring her wedding dress
Buckingham Palace is the London residence and administrative headquarters of the monarch of the United Kingdom. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is at the centre of state occasions and royal hospitality, it has been a focal point for the British people at times of national mourning. Known as Buckingham House, the building at the core of today's palace was a large townhouse built for the Duke of Buckingham in 1703 on a site, in private ownership for at least 150 years, it was acquired by King George III in 1761 as a private residence for Queen Charlotte and became known as The Queen's House. During the 19th century it was enlarged, principally by architects John Nash and Edward Blore, who constructed three wings around a central courtyard. Buckingham Palace became the London residence of the British monarch on the accession of Queen Victoria in 1837; the last major structural additions were made in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including the East Front, which contains the well-known balcony on which the royal family traditionally congregates to greet crowds.
The palace chapel was destroyed by a German bomb during World War II. The original early 19th-century interior designs, many of which survive, include widespread use of brightly coloured scagliola and blue and pink lapis, on the advice of Sir Charles Long. King Edward VII oversaw a partial redecoration in a Belle Époque gold colour scheme. Many smaller reception rooms are furnished in the Chinese regency style with furniture and fittings brought from the Royal Pavilion at Brighton and from Carlton House; the palace has 775 rooms, the garden is the largest private garden in London. The state rooms, used for official and state entertaining, are open to the public each year for most of August and September and on some days in winter and spring. In the Middle Ages, the site of the future palace formed part of the Manor of Ebury; the marshy ground was watered by the river Tyburn, which still flows below the courtyard and south wing of the palace. Where the river was fordable, the village of Eye Cross grew.
Ownership of the site changed hands many times. William gave the site to Geoffrey de Mandeville, who bequeathed it to the monks of Westminster Abbey. In 1531, Henry VIII acquired the Hospital of St James, which became St James's Palace, from Eton College, in 1536 he took the Manor of Ebury from Westminster Abbey; these transfers brought the site of Buckingham Palace back into royal hands for the first time since William the Conqueror had given it away 500 years earlier. Various owners leased it from royal landlords and the freehold was the subject of frenzied speculation during the 17th century. By the old village of Eye Cross had long since fallen into decay, the area was wasteland. Needing money, James I sold off part of the Crown freehold but retained part of the site on which he established a 4-acre mulberry garden for the production of silk. Clement Walker in Anarchia Anglicana refers to "new-erected sodoms and spintries at the Mulberry Garden at S. James's". In the late 17th century, the freehold was inherited from the property tycoon Sir Hugh Audley by the great heiress Mary Davies.
The first house erected within the site was that of a Sir William Blake, around 1624. The next owner was Lord Goring, who from 1633 extended Blake's house and developed much of today's garden known as Goring Great Garden, he did not, obtain the freehold interest in the mulberry garden. Unbeknown to Goring, in 1640 the document "failed to pass the Great Seal before King Charles I fled London, which it needed to do for legal execution", it was this critical omission that helped the British royal family regain the freehold under King George III. The improvident Goring defaulted on his rents. Arlington House rose on the site—the location of the southern wing of today's palace—the next year. In 1698, John Sheffield the first Duke of Buckingham and Normanby, acquired the lease; the house which forms the architectural core of the palace was built for the first Duke of Buckingham and Normanby in 1703 to the design of William Winde. The style chosen was of a large, three-floored central block with two smaller flanking service wings.
Buckingham House was sold by Buckingham's natural son, Sir Charles Sheffield, in 1761 to George III for £21,000. Sheffield's leasehold on the mulberry garden site, the freehold of, still owned by the royal family, was due to expire in 1774. Under the new Crown ownership, the building was intended as a private retreat for King George III's wife, Queen Charlotte, was accordingly known as The Queen's House. Remodelling of the structure began in 1762. In 1775, an Act of Parliament settled the property on Queen Charlotte, in exchange for her rights to Somerset House, 14 of her 15 children were born there; some furnishings were transferred from Carlton House, others had been bought in France after the French Revolution of 1789. While St James's Palace remained the official and ceremonial royal residence, the name "Buckingham-palace" was used from at least 1791. After his accession to the throne in 1820, King George IV continued the renovation with the idea in mind of a small, comfort