Edward Oxford was the first of eight people who tried to assassinate Queen Victoria. After Oxford was arrested and charged with treason, a jury found that Oxford was not guilty by reason of insanity and he was detained at Her Majesty's pleasure in the State Criminal Lunatic Asylum and in Broadmoor Hospital. Given conditional release for transportation to a British colony, he lived out the remainder of his life in Australia. Edward was born in Birmingham in 1822, the third of Hannah Marklew and George Oxford's seven children, his father, a gold chaser, died. His mother was able to find work and support the family, which meant Edward was able to attend school both in Birmingham and the Lambeth area of London, where the family moved when he was about 10; when Oxford left school, he first took bar work with his aunt in Hounslow in other public houses as a pot boy, or waiter. At the time of the attack he was eighteen years old and living with his mother and sister in lodgings in Camberwell, having quit his job at the Hog-in-the-Pound in Oxford Street.
Since his mother had returned to Birmingham on a regular trip to see family over a month before, Oxford was, in effect, living alone at the time of the event. On 4 May 1840, he bought a pair of pistols for £2, as well as a gunpowder flask, began practising in various shooting galleries in Leicester Square, the Strand and the West End. A week before the attack, he went into a Lambeth shop owned by a former schoolmate named Gray and bought fifty copper percussion caps, enquired where he could buy some bullets and three-pennies' worth of gunpowder. Gray sold him the powder, told him where he could find the ammunition. On the evening of 9 June he showed several witnesses. At about 4:00 PM on 10 June 1840, Oxford took up a position on a footpath at Constitution Hill, near Buckingham Palace; the Queen, four months pregnant with her first child, was accustomed to riding out in a phaeton, or low, open horse-drawn carriage, with her husband, Prince Albert in the late afternoon or early evening, with no other escort than two outriders.
When the royal couple appeared some two hours and drew level with him, he fired both pistols in succession, missing both times. He was seized by onlookers and disarmed. Oxford made no attempt to hide his actions declaring: "It was I, it was me that did it."He was arrested and charged with treason for attempting to assassinate the sovereign. When he was taken into custody at the police station he asked; when he was asked if the pistols had been loaded, he said. After his arrest, his lodgings were searched and a locked box was found containing a sword and scabbard, two pistol-bags, powder, a bullet-mould, five lead balls, some of the percussion caps bought from Gray, the intricate rules and proceedings of an imaginary military society called "Young England", complete with a list of made-up officers and correspondence. Members were to be armed with a brace of a sword, a rifle and a dagger. Oxford's trial at the Old Bailey was postponed until 9 July, after a thorough investigation was made of both his background and his possible motives.
In spite of his earlier admissions, no bullets could be found at the scene, so that the Crown could not prove that the pistols were, in fact and that he could have harmed anyone. Oxford claimed that the guns contained only gunpowder. Oxford appeared to be oblivious for most of the proceedings; the prosecution presented much eyewitness evidence, while the defence case consisted of various family members and friends who testified that Oxford had always seemed of unsound mind, that both his grandfather and father were alcoholics who had exhibited signs of mental illness. This carried a great deal of weight, as it was thought during this time that both drink and hereditary influence were strong causal factors for insanity. Oxford's mother testified her late husband had been violent and intimidating, that her son was not only prone to fits of hysterical laughter and emitting strange noises, he had been obsessed with firearms since he was a child. Various eminent pathologists and physicians testified that due to "brain disease" or other factors, such as the shape of his head, Oxford was either a mental imbecile or incapable of controlling himself.
The following day, the jury acquitted Oxford, declaring him to be "not guilty by reason of insanity". Like all such prisoners, he was sentenced to be detained "until Her Majesty's pleasure be known". In effect, this was an indefinite sentence, the source of the asylum term "pleasure men". Oxford was sent to the State Criminal Lunatic Asylum in Bethlem, where he remained as a model patient for the next twenty-four years. During that time he occupied himself by drawing and learning to play the violin, he learnt French and Italian to a degree of fluency, acquired some knowledge of Spanish and Latin, was employed as a painter and decorator within the confines of the hospital. When he was transferred to Broadmoor Hospital in 1864, the notes taken on his arrival describe him as "apparently sane", he still claimed the pistols he fired at the Queen were not loaded with anything other than powder, that his attack was fuelled not by a desire to injure her, but purely by a desire for notoriety. Oxford continued to be order
De La Rue
De La Rue plc is a British banknote manufacturing, security printing of passports and tax stamps, brand authentication and paper-making company with headquarters in Basingstoke, England. It has a factory on the Team Valley Trading Estate in Gateshead, other facilities in Loughton and Bathford. There are overseas offices in Sri Lanka and Malta, it is listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company was founded by Thomas de la Rue, who moved from Guernsey to London in 1821 and set up in business as a'Leghorn' straw hat maker as a stationer and printer. In 1831 he secured his business a Royal Warrant to produce playing cards. In 1855 it started printing postage stamps and in 1860 banknotes. In 1896, the family partnership was converted into a private company. In 1921, the de la Rue family sold their interests; the company was first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1947. Called Thomas De La Rue & Company, Limited, it changed its name in 1958 to The De La Rue Company Limited. A takeover bid for De La Rue was made by the Rank Organisation in 1968, but this was rejected by the Monopolies commission as being against the public interest.
In 1991 the company's name was changed again – this time to De La Rue plc. In 1965 De La Rue established a joint venture with the Italian printer and inventor Gualtiero Giori called De La Rue Giori. Based in Switzerland, the company specialized in building banknote printing equipment; the company printed banknotes for the Central Bank of Iran during the 1960s. In 1995, the company acquired Portals Limited, listed on the London stock market since 1904. For 300 years Portals had been regarded as the leading banknote paper manufacturer in the world, having manufactured banknote paper for the Bank of England since 1724. In 1997, De La Rue acquired Harrison and Sons, the stamp and banknote printers based in High Wycombe; the factory closed permanently in 2003. In early 2002, De La Rue purchased Smurfit Diamond Packaging Corporation of Sequoia Voting Systems, a California based company, a large provider of electronic voting systems in the United States, for $23 million. After losing money for three years in a business way out of the company's traditional lines, on March 2005 Sequoia was sold to Smartmatic, a multi-national technology company which had developed advanced election systems, voting machines included.
In 2003, the company acquired the Debden based banknote printing operations of the Bank of England. In 2003 and 2004 the company supplied banknotes to Iraq; the company was recognised by Hermann Simon as a role model for other small- to medium-sized businesses in his book Hidden Champions. The Highest Perfection, a history of De La Rue was published in 2011. Written by Peter Pugh for De La Rue, it covered the years 1712–2003. In August 2014, the company announced the appointment of Martin Sutherland as chief executive officer. In 2016, the Cash Handling division was sold to Privet Capital. In September 2016, the Bank of England issued its polymer five pound note, the first note from the bank to be printed on polymer. In December 2016, the company announced. In March 2018, the company sold the paper business. De La Rue retained a 10 % share in Portals. In April 2018, the company decided to appeal against the decision of the British government to manufacture passports in France, it subsequently decided against appealing.
De La Rue sells high-security printing technology for over 150 national currencies. De La Rue produces a wide range of other secure documents, including: Bank cheques Driving licences Passports Postage stamps Tax stamps Traveller's cheques Vouchers In 1843 De La Rue established its first overseas trade, as de la Rue's brother Paul travelled to Russia to advise on the making of playing cards. Thomas de la Rue's designs for playing cards are the basis for the modern standard design; the playing card business was sold to John Waddington in 1969. The company has printed postage stamps for the United Kingdom and some of its colonies, for Italy and for the Confederate States of America; some famous stamps such as the Cape of Good Hope triangulars were printed by De La Rue & Co. after Perkins Bacon fell out of favour with the postal authorities of the time. The first 50 years of postage stamp production were chronicled in John Easton's The De La Rue History of British and Foreign Postage Stamps 1855–1901.
De La Rue claims to have developed the first practical fountain pen in 1881 and was a leading manufacturer of fountain pens in Britain. Products were marketed under the "Onoto" brand. Production of fountain pens by De La Rue ceased in Britain in 1958 but continued for a few more years in Australia. During the 1930s De La Rue created a number of board games; these included a cricket game, produced in a number of different editions, Round The Horn, a game which re-created the annual race of grain-laden, square-rigged sailing cargo ships from Australia to London. The games used playing cards as part of the component set. List of mints Banknotes of the pound sterling Commonwealth banknote-issuing institutions Gemalto - a competitor Giesecke & Devrient – a competitor based in Munich Hong Kong Note Printing – founded in 1984 by Thomas De La Rue Official website History of De La Rue’s playing cards A research website with more detail of De La Rue company history Article and images of 1930s De La Rue Board Game, Stumpz
Hackpen White Horse
Hackpen White Horse is a chalk hill figure of a white horse on Hackpen Hill, located below The Ridgeway on the edge of the Marlborough Downs, two miles south east of Broad Hinton, England. It is one of nine white horse hill figures located in Wiltshire, it is known as the Broad Hinton White Horse due to its near location to Broad Hinton. Cut by local parish clerk Henry Eatwell in 1838 to commemorate the coronation of Queen Victoria, the horse is 90' square feet and is said to be best viewed from B4041 road; the horse is scoured and maintained. The origin of the horse is uncertain, is sometimes said to be the only 19th century white horse to have little of its history known, it is regarded that the horse was cut in 1838 by Henry Eatwell, a parish clerk of Broad Hinton, assisted by a local pub landlord. It is said to commemorate the coronation of Queen Victoria; the horse is cut of chalk, is 90' square feet, making it the only square-dimension horse in England, faces WNW. Although the hill it resides on, Hackpen Hill, is high, it is a gentle slope when compared to the hills of most other Wiltshire horses.
Because the hill is gentle, the horse is banked up and raised from the surrounding grass to make it more visible. The head was elevated to help with the foreshortening; the best view of the horse is said to be from the nearby B4041 road, whilst the A361 road near Broad Hinton provides a clear view. At the top of the hill is a car park where the Ridgeway crosses the B4041 road, a footpath stretches from there down to the horse, making the horse accessible to the public. Many real horses roam the field, it has been suggested that the stones for Stonehenge and Avebury may have come from a field of sarsen stones just to the south east of its location. The expression "as different as chalk and cheese" is sometimes believed to refer to the land divided by Hackpen Hill; the hill forms the boundary between the high chalk downs to the south of it and the clay cattle country to the north, where cheese is a product of the milk from the cattle, so the two areas "are as different as chalk and cheese." Hackpen White Horse was not the only hillside shape cut to commemorate Queen Victoria.
The horse ties "neck-and-neck" with Broad Town White Horse as the closest white horse to Swindon. The horse is scoured. In either May or June 2000, John Wain cleaned it single-handedly, he flew David Brewer over the area to photograph the village of Broad Hinton and the white horse for brewers's book Images of a Wiltshire Downland Village: Broad Hinton and Uffcott. Wain cleaned it annually until Bevan Pope cleaned the horse single-handedly on 23 September 2004. Wain cleaned the horse again with the help of a group of friends on 1 February 2011 and 4 February 2012. On both occasions, they illuminated the newly cleaned horse. Although to illuminate a white horse has been sporadic tradition for other horses in Wiltshire, those occasions marked the first times it had been done for Hackpen White Horse. In March 2009, the horse was transformed into a "red horse" for the Comic Relief charity's Red Nose Day campaign; the White Horse pub, located half a mile away in Winterbourne Bassett, features an illustration resembling the horse as its logo.
The pub itself was named after the eight horses in Wiltshire. The horse has featured in several artworks, including a stained glass window made by Berry Stained Glass, Benoit Philppe's The Hackpen White Horse oil on canvas painting, a silver necklace created in 2015 by Devizes-based jeweller Daniel Pike. In 2005, the horse appeared in episode 1 of series 6 of Top Gear, and, in 2012, for a Pukka Pies sponsorship advert for ITV travel series Ade in Britain, Pukka Pies modified a photograph of the location to include a hill figure of one of their pies instead of the horse. Wiltshire white horsesWestbury White Horse Pewsey White Horse Devizes White Horse Broad Town White Horse Cherhill White Horse Marlborough White Horse Alton Barnes White HorseOther white horsesUffington White Horse Osmington White Horse Kilburn White Horse Woolbury White Horse
Coronation of Queen Victoria
The coronation of Queen Victoria took place on Thursday, 28 June 1838, just over a year after she succeeded to the throne of the United Kingdom at the age of 18. The ceremony was held in Westminster Abbey after a public procession through the streets from Buckingham Palace, to which the queen returned as part of a second procession. Planning for the coronation, led by prime minister Lord Melbourne, began at Cabinet level in March 1838. In the face of various objections from numerous parties, the Cabinet announced on Saturday, 7 April, that the coronation would be at the end of the parliamentary session in June, it was budgeted at £70,000, more than double the cost of the "cut-price" 1831 coronation but less than the £240,000 spent when George IV was crowned in July 1821. A key element of the plan was presentation of the event to a wider public. By 1838, the newly built railways were able to deliver huge numbers of people into London and it has been estimated that some 400,000 visitors arrived to swell the crowds who thronged the streets while the two processions took place and filled the parks where catering and entertainment were provided.
Hyde Park was the scene including a balloon ascent. The fair was extended by popular demand to four. Green Park featured a firework display the night after the ceremony; the event took place in fine weather and was considered a great success by the press and wider public, though those inside the Abbey witnessed a good deal of mishap and confusion due to lack of rehearsal. In the country at large, there was considerable Radical opposition to the coronation in northern England. Queen Victoria succeeded her uncle King William IV on 20 June 1837, her first prime minister was Lord Melbourne. Until 1867, the Demise of the Crown automatically triggered the dissolution of parliament and a general election was therefore necessary with voting between 24 July and 18 August; the result was a victory for Melbourne whose existing Whig Party government was returned to power for four more years. Their majority over the opposition Conservative Party was reduced from 112 seats to thirty. Melbourne was the leading player in the planning and implementation of Victoria's coronation.
Melbourne's Cabinet began formal discussion of the subject of the coronation in March 1838. A major factor in the planning was this being the first coronation held since the passing of the Reform Act 1832, which the government recognised as radically reshaping the monarchy. In terms of the ceremony itself, the extension of the franchise meant that some 500 Members of Parliament would be invited to attend in addition to the peerage. A greater consideration was the need to somehow involve the general public and Melbourne championed the centuries old custom of a public procession through the streets. There had been a procession in 1831 but a much longer route was planned for 1838 including a new startpoint at Buckingham Palace. Earlier processions had run from the Tower of London to the Abbey. Victoria's procession would be the longest since that of Charles II in April 1661. Scaffolding for spectators would be built all along the route; this was achieved according to contemporary reports, including one saying there was "scarcely a vacant spot along the whole, unoccupied with galleries or scaffolding".
The diarist Charles Greville commented that the principal object of the government plan was to amuse and interest the ordinary working people. He concluded that the "great merit" of the coronation was that so much had been done for the people. In terms of cost, the government was torn between the extremes of George IV's lavish coronation in 1821 and the "cut-price" event, dubbed the "Half-Crown-ation", held for William IV in 1831, they decided to allow a budget of £70,000. Therefore, the cost of Victoria's coronation represented a compromise between two extremes of £240,000 and £30,000; the government's plans for the coronation attracted considerable criticism from its opponents. For different reasons, both Tories and Radicals objected to the coronation being turned into a day of popular celebration, to be seen by as wide a public as possible; the Tory objections made beforehand, were that the government's plans to put much of the spending into the long public procession detracted from the traditional dignity of the ceremonies at Westminster, which would be "shorn of majesty by Benthamite utilitarianism".
The Radical left, including the Chartist movement, anti-monarchist, thought the whole occasion far too expensive. A dubious perception that prevailed was the identification of the new monarch with the Whig party; this would be a problem through the early years of Victoria's reign, leading to the so-called Bedchamber Crisis in 1839 over what were the political appointments of her ladies-in-waiting. In addition, the Whig party had exploited Victoria's name in its election campaign, suggesting that a monarch from a new generation would mean the progress of reform. William IV and his wife, Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen, had strong Tory sympathies, while Victoria's mother and namesake was known to favour the Whigs, it was assumed, to some extent that Victoria herself had been brought up to hold similar views. This was reflected in popular ballads sold on the streets, one of which had Victoria saying: The government's decision to dispense with certain traditions was seen as snub by the Tory aristocracy.
The omissions included an exclusive banquet at Westminster Hall and medieval rituals like a monarchical champion throwing down a gauntlet. In the House of Lords, complaints were made about the processions because a young girl (Victori
Alfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
Alfred reigned as Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha from 1893 to 1900. He was the second son and fourth child of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, he was known as the Duke of Edinburgh from 1866 until he succeeded his paternal uncle Ernest II as the reigning Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in the German Empire. Prince Alfred was born on 6 August 1844 at Windsor Castle to the reigning British monarch, Queen Victoria, her husband, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the second son of Ernst I, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, he was second in the line of succession behind the Prince of Wales. Alfred was baptized by the Archbishop of Canterbury, William Howley, at the Private Chapel in Windsor Castle on 6 September 1844, his godparents were Prince George of Cambridge. Alfred studied violin at Holyrood, where his accompanist was Hungarian expatriate George Lichtenstein. Alfred remained second in line to the British throne from his birth until 8 January 1864, when his older brother Edward and his wife Alexandra of Denmark had their first son, Prince Albert Victor.
Alfred became third in line to the throne and as Edward and Alexandra continued to have children, Alfred was further demoted in the order of succession. In 1856, at the age of 12, it was decided that Prince Alfred, in accordance with his own wishes, should enter the Royal Navy. A separate establishment was accordingly assigned to him, with Lieutenant J. C. Cowell, RE, as governor, he passed the examination in August 1858, was appointed as midshipman in HMS Euryalus at the age of 14. In July 1860, while on this ship, he paid an official visit to the Cape Colony, made a favourable impression both on the colonials and on the native chiefs, he took part in a hunt at Hartebeeste-Hoek, resulting in the slaughter of large numbers of game animals. On the abdication of King Otto of Greece, in 1862, Prince Alfred was chosen to succeed him, but the British government blocked plans for him to ascend the Greek throne because of the Queen's opposition to the idea, she and her late husband had made plans for him to succeed to the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg.
Prince Alfred, remained in the navy, was promoted to lieutenant on 24 February 1863, serving under Count Gleichen on the corvette HMS Racoon. He was promoted to captain on 23 February 1866 and was appointed to the command of the frigate HMS Galatea in January 1867. In the Queen's Birthday Honours on 24 May 1866, the Prince was created Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Ulster, Earl of Kent, with an annuity of £15,000 granted by Parliament, he took his seat in the House of Lords on 8 June. While still in command of the Galatea, the Duke of Edinburgh started from Plymouth on 24 January 1867 for his voyage around the world. On 7 June 1867, he left Gibraltar, reached the Cape of Good Hope on 24 July and paid a royal visit to Cape Town on 24 August 1867 after landing at Simon's Town a while earlier, he landed at Glenelg, South Australia, on 31 October 1867. Being the first member of the royal family to visit Australia, he was received with great enthusiasm. During his stay of nearly five months he visited Adelaide, Sydney and Tasmania.
Adelaide school Prince Alfred College was named in his honour to mark the occasion. On 12 March 1868, on his second visit to Sydney, he was invited by Sir William Manning, President of the Sydney Sailors' Home, to picnic at the beachfront suburb of Clontarf to raise funds for the home. At the function, he was wounded in the back by a revolver fired by Henry James O'Farrell. Alfred was shot just to the right of his spine and was tended for the next two weeks by six nurses, trained by Florence Nightingale and led by Matron Lucy Osburn, who had just arrived in Australia in February 1868. In the violent struggle during which Alfred was shot, William Vial had managed to wrest the gun away from O'Farrell until bystanders assisted. Vial, a master of a Masonic Lodge, had helped to organise the picnic in honour of the Duke's visit and was presented with a gold watch for securing Alfred's life. Another bystander, George Thorne, was wounded in the foot by O'Farrell's second shot. O'Farrell was arrested at the scene tried and hanged on 21 April 1868.
On the evening of 23 March 1868, the most influential people of Sydney voted for a memorial building to be erected, "to raise a permanent and substantial monument in testimony of the heartfelt gratitude of the community at the recovery of HRH". This led to a public subscription. Alfred soon recovered from his injury and was able to resume command of his ship and return home in early April 1868, he reached Spithead on 26 June 1868, after an absence of seventeen months. He visited Hawaii in 1869 and spent time with the royal family there, where he was presented with leis upon his arrival, he was the first member of the royal family to visit New Zealand, arriving in 1869 on HMS Galatea. He became the first European prince to visit Japan and on 4 September 1869, he was received at an audience by the teenaged Emperor Meiji in Tokyo; the Duke's next voyage was to India, where he arrived in December 1869 and Ceylon, which he visited the following year. In both countries and at Hong Kong, which he visited on the way, he was the first British prince to set foot in the country.
The native rulers of India vied with one another in the magnif
The pound sterling known as the pound and less referred to as sterling, is the official currency of the United Kingdom, Guernsey, the Isle of Man, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, the British Antarctic Territory, Tristan da Cunha. It is subdivided into 100 pence. A number of nations that do not use sterling have currencies called the pound. Sterling is the third most-traded currency in the foreign exchange market, after the United States dollar, the euro. Together with those two currencies and the Chinese yuan, it forms the basket of currencies which calculate the value of IMF special drawing rights. Sterling is the third most-held reserve currency in global reserves; the British Crown dependencies of Guernsey and the Isle of Man produce their own local issues of sterling which are considered equivalent to UK sterling in their respective regions. The pound sterling is used in Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands, Saint Helena and Ascension Island in Saint Helena and Tristan da Cunha; the Bank of England is the central bank for the pound sterling, issuing its own coins and banknotes, regulating issuance of banknotes by private banks in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Banknotes issued by other jurisdictions are not regulated by the Bank of England. The full official name pound sterling, is used in formal contexts and when it is necessary to distinguish the United Kingdom currency from other currencies with the same name. Otherwise the term pound is used; the currency name is sometimes abbreviated to just sterling in the wholesale financial markets, but not when referring to specific amounts. The abbreviations "ster." and "stg." are sometimes used. The term "British pound" is sometimes incorrectly used in less formal contexts, it is not an official name of the currency; the exchange rate of the pound sterling against the US dollar is referred to as "cable" in the wholesale foreign exchange markets. The origins of this term are attributed to the fact that in the 1800s, the GBP/USD exchange rate was transmitted via transatlantic cable. Forex traders of GBP/USD are sometimes referred to as "cable dealers". GBP/USD is now the only currency pair with its own name in the foreign exchange markets, after IEP/USD, known as "wire" in the forward FX markets, no longer exists after the Irish Pound was replaced by the euro in 1999.
There is apparent convergence of opinion regarding the origin of the term "pound sterling", toward its derivation from the name of a small Norman silver coin, away from its association with Easterlings or other etymologies. Hence, the Oxford English Dictionary state that the "most plausible" etymology is derivation from the Old English steorra for "star" with the added diminutive suffix "-ling", to mean "little star" and to refer to a silver penny of the English Normans; as another established source notes, the compound expression was derived: However, the perceived narrow window of the issuance of this coin, the fact that coin designs changed in the period in question, led Philip Grierson to reject this in favour of a more complex theory. Another argument that the Hanseatic League was the origin for both the origin of its definition and manufacture, in its name is that the German name for the Baltic is "Ost See", or "East Sea", from this the Baltic merchants were called "Osterlings", or "Easterlings".
In 1260, Henry III granted them a charter of protection and land for their Kontor, the Steelyard of London, which by the 1340s was called "Easterlings Hall", or Esterlingeshalle. Because the League's money was not debased like that of England, English traders stipulated to be paid in pounds of the "Easterlings", contracted to "'sterling". For further discussion of the etymology of "sterling", see sterling silver; the currency sign for the pound is £, written with a single cross-bar, though a version with a double cross-bar is sometimes seen. This symbol derives from medieval Latin documents; the ISO 4217 currency code is GBP, formed from "GB", the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code for the United Kingdom, the first letter of "pound". It does not stand for "Great Britain Pound" or "Great British Pound"; the abbreviation "UKP" is used but this is non-standard because the ISO 3166 country code for the United Kingdom is GB. The Crown dependencies use their own codes: GGP, JEP and IMP. Stocks are traded in pence, so traders may refer to pence sterling, GBX, when listing stock prices.
A common slang term for the pound sterling or pound is quid, singular and plural, except in the common phrase "quids in!". The term may have come via Italian immigrants from "scudo", the name for a number of coins used in Italy until the 19th century.
Victoria was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India. Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke and the King died in 1820, Victoria was raised under close supervision by her mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, she inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father's three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held little direct political power. Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments. Victoria married her first cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, their nine children married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the sobriquet "the grandmother of Europe". After Albert's death in 1861, Victoria avoided public appearances.
As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration, her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any of her predecessors and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, political and military change within the United Kingdom, was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire, she was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover. Her son and successor, Edward VII, initiated the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the line of his father. Victoria's father was Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of the reigning King of the United Kingdom, George III; until 1817, Edward's niece, Princess Charlotte of Wales, was the only legitimate grandchild of George III. Her death in 1817 precipitated a succession crisis that brought pressure on the Duke of Kent and his unmarried brothers to marry and have children.
In 1818 he married Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, a widowed German princess with two children—Carl and Feodora —by her first marriage to the Prince of Leiningen. Her brother Leopold was Princess Charlotte's widower; the Duke and Duchess of Kent's only child, was born at 4.15 a.m. on 24 May 1819 at Kensington Palace in London. Victoria was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Charles Manners-Sutton, on 24 June 1819 in the Cupola Room at Kensington Palace, she was baptised Alexandrina after one of her godparents, Emperor Alexander I of Russia, Victoria, after her mother. Additional names proposed by her parents—Georgina and Augusta—were dropped on the instructions of Kent's eldest brother, the Prince Regent. At birth, Victoria was fifth in the line of succession after the four eldest sons of George III: George, the Prince Regent; the Prince Regent had no surviving children, the Duke of York had no children. The Duke of Clarence and the Duke of Kent married on the same day in 1818, but both of Clarence's legitimate daughters died as infants.
The first of these was Princess Charlotte, born and died on 27 March 1819, two months before Victoria was born. Victoria's father died in January 1820. A week her grandfather died and was succeeded by his eldest son as George IV. Victoria was third in line to the throne after York and Clarence. Clarence's second daughter was Princess Elizabeth of Clarence who lived for twelve weeks from 10 December 1820 to 4 March 1821 and, while Elizabeth lived, Victoria was fourth in line; the Duke of York died in 1827. When George IV died in 1830, he was succeeded by his next surviving brother, Clarence, as William IV, Victoria became heir presumptive; the Regency Act 1830 made special provision for Victoria's mother to act as regent in case William died while Victoria was still a minor. King William distrusted the Duchess's capacity to be regent, in 1836 he declared in her presence that he wanted to live until Victoria's 18th birthday, so that a regency could be avoided. Victoria described her childhood as "rather melancholy".
Her mother was protective, Victoria was raised isolated from other children under the so-called "Kensington System", an elaborate set of rules and protocols devised by the Duchess and her ambitious and domineering comptroller, Sir John Conroy, rumoured to be the Duchess's lover. The system prevented the princess from meeting people whom her mother and Conroy deemed undesirable, was designed to render her weak and dependent upon them; the Duchess avoided the court because she was scandalised by the presence of King William's illegitimate children. Victoria shared a bedroom with her mother every night, studied with private tutors to a regular timetable, spent her play-hours with her dolls and her King Charles Spaniel, Dash, her lessons included French, German and Latin, but she spoke only English at home. In 1830, the Duchess of Kent and Conroy took Victoria across the centre of England to visit the Malvern Hills, stopping at towns and great country houses along the way. Similar journeys to oth