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
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
Queen Victoria's pets
Queen Victoria and her close family kept numerous pet animals, including: Alma – a Shetland pony given by King Victor Emmanuel Dandie – a Skye terrier Dash – a Cavalier King Charles spaniel Eos – a greyhound which Prince Albert brought from Germany Flora – a Shetland pony given by King Victor Emmanuel Goats – The Shah of Persia presented Queen Victoria with a pair of Tibetan goats upon her accession to the throne. From these, a royal goat herd was established at Windsor. Goats from this herd were used as regimental mascots by regiments such as the Royal Welch Fusiliers. Nero – a greyhound Islay – a Skye terrier. Victoria owned Islay for five years and he died after losing a fight with a cat. Jacquot – a donkey Unknown name – a lory Marco – a small spitz, the first of her many Pomeranians. Hector – a deerhound Noble – the Queen's favourite collie. A statue by Princess Louise is in Osborne House. Picco – a Sardinian pony Sharp – a collie Turi – a Pomeranian who lay on her deathbed at her request Coco – An African grey parrot Canadian Parliamentary Cats Chief Mouser to the Cabinet Office, United Kingdom Hermitage cats in Saint Petersburg, Russia Pets of Vladimir Putin Tibs the Great Cats of the President of Taiwan United States presidential pets Pets of the British Royal Family Pets in the United Kingdom
Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II
The Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II was a multinational celebration throughout 2012, that marked the 60th anniversary of the accession of Queen Elizabeth II on 6 February 1952. The only other time in British history that a monarch celebrated a Diamond Jubilee was in 1897, when Queen Victoria celebrated hers. Commemorative events were held throughout the Commonwealth of Nations. Unlike the Queen's Silver and Golden Jubilees, when the Queen toured most of her realms around the world, Elizabeth II and her husband the Duke of Edinburgh, toured only the United Kingdom. Other parts of the Commonwealth were toured by her children and grandchildren as her representatives. At the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth, British Prime Minister David Cameron announced the creation of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, launched in the UK on 6 February 2012. Chaired by former British prime minister Sir John Major, the trust was intended to support charitable organisations and projects across the Commonwealth of Nations, focusing on areas such as cures for diseases and the promotion of all types of culture and education.
In early 2012, Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard announced the Australian Crown-in-Council would make an A$5.4 million contribution to the trust and the New Zealand Crown-in-Council made a similar $1 million donation. The Canadian government announced in April that former prime minister Jean Chrétien would be Canada's representative to the organisation. In February 2012, a senior advisor was quoted as saying the Queen set two guidelines for the planning of her jubilee: the use of public funds should be minimised and people should not "be forced to celebrate"; the first major international event of the jubilee celebrations was the Diamond Jubilee Pageant branded The World Comes to Windsor, a cavalcade held at Windsor Castle to celebrate the Queen's visits to and tours of over 250 countries, as well as her passion for horses. The show, which featured 550 horses and 1,100 performers from around the world, was performed in the evenings between 10 and 13 May, after the daytime events of the annual Royal Windsor Horse Show had taken place.
The Queen attended the final night. On 18 May, the Queen hosted an informal lunch at Windsor Castle for more than twenty current or former monarchs from other countries. In the evening of the same day, the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall hosted a dinner that most of the monarchs attended, although the Queen herself was not present. Criticism was directed at the presence of the King of Bahrain at the lunch, because of alleged repression of protests against the government of Bahrain in that country in 2011. In London, protesters against the King assembled outside Buckingham Palace during the dinner, although he did not attend that event; the lighting of thousands of beacons across the Commonwealth took place on 4 June. The number of beacons was set at 2,012; the first beacon of the Jubilee was lit on the grounds of Apifo'ou College in Nukuʻalofa, Tonga, by Tongan girl and Boy Scouts using coconut sheath torches. Other nations, including Kenya, New Zealand, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, several Caribbean states, took part in the beacon lighting.
The world's most remote beacon was lit in Tristan da Cunha in the south Atlantic, using invasive, non-native plants to fuel the fire. In the United Kingdom, British servicemen and women wounded in battle and individuals representing charities carried beacons to the summits of the UK's four highest peaks. One beacon was lit at Treetops Hotel in Aberdare National Park in Kenya, where the Queen was at the moment of her accession to the throne; the Queen lit the beacon outside Buckingham Palace at 10:30 pm, by inserting a large, specially made, diamond-cut crystal into a receptacle. The lighting proceeded; the Queen's husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, was hospitalised with a bladder infection on 4 June and thus was not able to attend any of the official events. In his speech given at the conclusion of the Diamond Jubilee Concert, the Prince of Wales commented on the sadness of his father's absence and urged the crowd to cheer loud enough for the Duke to hear in hospital. Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, stated after visiting his father that the latter was watching the celebrations on television.
The Queen visited the Duke the following day. That same evening, a pre-recorded message by the Queen was released and aired on television around the world. Elizabeth stated: "the events that I have attended to mark my Diamond Jubilee have been a humbling experience" and expressed her thanks to those who had organised the celebrations over the extended weekend, ending by saying: "I will continue to treasure and draw inspiration from the countless kindnesses shown to me in this country and throughout the Commonwealth. Thank you all.". Quentin Bryce, the Governor-General of Australia, announced that the Diamond Jubilee would be celebrated "with a host of national and community events throughout the Commonwealth." In a similar vein, it was said in late 2011 that the government of Queensland was planning to declare a holiday in June 2012 to mark the jubilee. The Royal Australian Mint announced in August 2011 that it would be releasing a silver proof 50-cent coin to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
Australia Post issued a series of special stamps to mark the occasion. Paying tribute to Elizabeth II as Queen of Australia in the House of Representatives on 6 February 2012, Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard stated the Queen was a revered figure in Australia. Gillard announced that she would on 4 June light a beacon atop Parliament
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
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
The Bodleian Libraries are a collection of 28 libraries that serve the University of Oxford in England, most famously, the Bodleian Library itself, as well as many other central and faculty libraries. As of the 2016–17 year, the libraries collectively hold 13 million printed items, as well as numerous other objects and artefacts. A major product of this collaboration has been a joint integrated library system, OLIS, its public interface, SOLO, which provides a union catalogue covering all member libraries, as well as the libraries of individual colleges and other faculty libraries, which are not members of the group but do share cataloguing information, its busiest library is the Social Sciences Library, which, at its peak, serves 7,500 visitors in a period of nine weeks. Founded in February 2000 as Oxford University Library Services, the organisation was renamed on 2 March 2010; as of the 2016–17 year, the group cares for 13 million printed items, 26,805 metres of archives and manuscripts, a staff of over 561.
It is the second largest library in the UK. The continued growth of the library has resulted in a severe shortage of storage space. Over 1.5 million items are stored outside Oxford. Locations used included a site at Nuneham Courtenay and a disused salt mine in Cheshire. In 2007 and 2008, in an effort to obtain better and more capacious storage facilities for the library’s collections, Oxford University Library Services tried to obtain planning permission to build a new book depository on the Osney Mead site, to the southwest of Oxford city centre. However, this application was unsuccessful and the new Book Storage Facility was instead constructed at a site on South Marston Industrial Estate on the outskirts of Swindon; this Book Storage Facility, which cost £26 million, opened in October 2010 and has 153 miles of shelving, including 3,224 bays with 95,000 shelf levels, 600 map cabinets to hold 1.2 million maps and other items. Previously-existing Osney Mead premises are used for backroom operations.
The Bodleian Libraries group includes centralised departments: Academic and Learning Services Bodleian Digital Library Systems and Services Collections Management Communications Conservation and Collection CareThe current Director of the Libraries Richard Ovenden, like his predecessors Sarah Thomas and founding director Reginald Carr, holds the position concurrently with that of Bodley's Librarian. Senior administrative staff are based in the Clarendon Building on the central Bodleian estate; as of September 2017, the website of the group lists the following member libraries: Bodleian KB Chen China Centre Library Bodleian Education Library Bodleian Health Care Libraries Bodleian History Faculty Library, in Radcliffe Camera Bodleian Japanese Library Bodleian Latin American Centre Library Bodleian Law Library Bodleian Library Bodleian Music Faculty Library Bodleian Oriental Institute Library Bodleian Social Science Library English Faculty Library Leopold Muller Memorial Library Philosophy and Theology Faculties Library, in former Radcliffe Infirmary building Radcliffe Science Library Rewley House Continuing Education Library Sackler Library Sainsbury Library at the Saïd Business School Sherardian Library of Plant Taxonomy Taylor Institution Library Tylor Library Vere Harmsworth Library at the Rothermere American Institute Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine LibraryA further 40 college libraries and 20 faculty and speciality libraries are not members of the group.
Bodleian Library Bodley Medal Book storage New Bodleian Library University of Oxford Weston Library