Walter Rilla was a German film actor of Jewish descent. He appeared in more than 130 films between 1922 and 1977, he was born in Neunkirchen and died in Rosenheim, Germany. Having debuted on the stage, Rilla began his film in career in Germany during the silent era; this included an early role for him in Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau's The Grand Duke's Finances in 1924. Following the rise of the Nazi Party to power in 1933, he emigrated to Britain and became a regular performer in British films in villainous or aristocratic roles. Both during and after the Second World War he played Nazi agents. From the 1950s onwards he returned to West Germany to appear in films and on television, alternating this with continued roles in British cinema, he was the father of film director Wolf Rilla. Prawer, S. S. Between Two Worlds: The Jewish Presence in German and Austrian Film, 1910-1933. Berghahn Books, 2007. Dove, Richard. Journey of No Return: Five German-speaking Literary Exiles in Britain, 1933-1945. Libris, 2000.
Walter Rilla on IMDb Photographs and literature
William Ewart Gladstone
William Ewart Gladstone was a British statesman and Liberal Party politician. In a career lasting over sixty years, he served for twelve years as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, spread over four terms beginning in 1868 and ending in 1894, he served as Chancellor of the Exchequer four times. Gladstone was born in Liverpool to Scottish parents, he first entered the House of Commons in 1832, beginning his political career as a High Tory, a grouping which became the Conservative Party under Robert Peel in 1834. Gladstone served as a minister in both of Peel's governments, in 1846 joined the breakaway Peelite faction, which merged into the new Liberal Party in 1859, he was Chancellor under Lord Palmerston and Lord Russell. Gladstone's own political doctrine—which emphasised equality of opportunity, free trade, laissez-faire economic policies—came to be known as Gladstonian liberalism, his popularity amongst the working-class earned him the sobriquet "The People's William". In 1868, Gladstone became Prime Minister for the first time.
Many reforms were passed during his first ministry, including the disestablishment of the Church of Ireland and the introduction of secret voting. After electoral defeat in 1874, Gladstone resigned as leader of the Liberal Party, his Midlothian Campaign of 1879–80 was an early example of many modern political campaigning techniques. After the 1880 general election, Gladstone formed his second ministry, which saw the passage of the Third Reform Act as well as crises in Egypt and Ireland, where his government passed repressive measures but improved the legal rights of Irish tenant farmers. Back in office in early 1886, Gladstone proposed home rule for Ireland but was defeated in the House of Commons; the resulting split in the Liberal Party helped keep them out of office—with one short break—for twenty years. Gladstone formed his last government in 1892, at the age of 82; the Second Home Rule Bill passed through the Commons but was defeated in the House of Lords in 1893. Gladstone left office in March 1894, aged 84, as both the oldest person to serve as Prime Minister and the only Prime Minister to have served four terms.
He died three years later. Gladstone was known affectionately by his supporters as "The People's William" or the "G. O. M.". Historians call him one of Britain's greatest leaders. Born in 1809 in Liverpool, at 62 Rodney Street, William Ewart Gladstone was the fourth son of the merchant John Gladstone, his second wife, Anne MacKenzie Robertson. In 1835, the family name was changed from Gladstones to Gladstone by royal licence, his father was made a baronet, of Fasque and Balfour, in 1846. Although born and brought up in Liverpool, William Gladstone was of purely Scottish ancestry, his grandfather Thomas Gladstones was a prominent merchant from Leith, his maternal grandfather, Andrew Robertson, was Provost of Dingwall and a Sheriff-Substitute of Ross-shire. His biographer John Morley described him as "a highlander in the custody of a lowlander", an adversary as "an ardent Italian in the custody of a Scotsman". One of his earliest childhood memories was being made to stand on a table and say "Ladies and gentlemen" to the assembled audience at a gathering to promote the election of George Canning as MP for Liverpool in 1812.
In 1814, young "Willy" visited Scotland for the first time, as he and his brother John travelled with their father to Edinburgh and Dingwall to visit their relatives. Willy and his brother were both made freemen of the burgh of Dingwall. In 1815, Gladstone travelled to London and Cambridge for the first time with his parents. Whilst in London, he attended a service of thanksgiving with his family at St Paul's Cathedral following the Battle of Waterloo, where he saw the Prince Regent. William Gladstone was educated from 1816–1821 at a preparatory school at the vicarage of St. Thomas' Church at Seaforth, close to his family's residence, Seaforth House. In 1821, William followed in the footsteps of his elder brothers and attended Eton College before matriculating in 1828 at Christ Church, where he read Classics and Mathematics, although he had no great interest in the latter subject. In December 1831, he achieved the double first-class degree. Gladstone served as President of the Oxford Union, where he developed a reputation as an orator, which followed him into the House of Commons.
At university, Gladstone was a denounced Whig proposals for parliamentary reform. Following the success of his double first, William travelled with his brother John on a Grand Tour of Europe, visiting Belgium, France and Italy. Upon his return to England, William was elected to Parliament in 1832 as a Tory Member of Parliament for Newark through the influence of the local patron, the Duke of Newcastle. Although Gladstone entered Lincoln's Inn in 1833, with intentions of becoming a barrister, by 1839 he had requested that his name should be removed from the list because he no longer intended to be called to the Bar. In the House of Commons, Gladstone was a disciple of High Toryism and, as a scion of one of the largest slave-holding families in the world, he opposed both the abolition of slavery and factory legislation. Gladstone's father was a slave owner.
Ernest II, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
Ernest II was the sovereign duke of the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, reigning from 1844 to his death. Ernest was born in Coburg as the elder child of Ernest III, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, his wife, Princess Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. Fourteen months his younger brother, Prince Albert, was born, who became consort of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. Ernest's father became Duke of Gotha in 1826 through an exchange of territories. In 1842, Ernest married Princess Alexandrine of Baden in. Soon after, he succeeded as duke upon the death of his father on 29 January 1844; as reigning Duke Ernest II, he supported the German Confederation in the Schleswig-Holstein Wars against Denmark, sending thousands of troops and becoming the commander of a German corps. After King Otto of Greece was deposed in 1862, the British government put Ernest's name forward as a possible successor. Negotiations fell through however for various reasons, not in the least of, that he would not give up his beloved duchies in favor of the Greek throne.
A supporter of a unified Germany, Ernest watched the various political movements with great interest. While he was a great and outspoken proponent of the liberal movement, he surprised many by switching sides and supporting the more conservative Prussians during the Austro-Prussian and Franco-Prussian wars and subsequent unification of Germany, his support of the conservatives came at a price however, he was no longer viewed as the possible leader of a political movement. According to historian Charlotte Zeepvat, Ernest became "increasingly lost in a whirl of private amusements which earned only contempt from outside". Ernest's position was linked to his brother Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria; the two boys were raised as though twins, became closer upon the separation and divorce of their parents, as well as the eventual death of their mother. The princes' relationship experienced phases of closeness as well as minor arguments as they grew older. Despite their differing political views and opinions however, Ernest accepted his second eldest nephew Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, as his heir-presumptive.
Upon Ernest's death on 22 August 1893 at Reinhardsbrunn, Alfred succeeded to the ducal throne. Ernest, Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, was born at Ehrenburg Palace in Coburg on 21 June 1818, he was the elder son of Ernest III, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld and his first wife Princess Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. He was soon joined by a brother, Prince Albert, who would become the husband of Queen Victoria. Though Duke Ernest fathered numerous children in various affairs, the two boys would have no other legitimate siblings. In 1826, their father succeeded as Ernest I, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha through an exchange of territories after the death of the duke's uncle, Frederick IV, Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. There are various accounts of Ernest's childhood; when he was fourteen months old, a servant commented. He is teething and as cross as a little badger from impatience and liveliness, he is not pretty now, except his beautiful black eyes." In May 1820, his mother described Ernest as "very big for his age, as well as intelligent.
His big black eyes are full of spirit and vivacity." Biographer Richard Hough writes that "even from their infancy, it was plainly evident that the elder son took after his father, in character and appearance, while Albert resembled his mother in most respects." Ernest and his brother lived with their grandmother the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld until her death in 1831. He and Albert were educated together as if they were twins. Though Albert was fourteen months younger, he surpassed Ernest intellectually. According to their tutor, "they went hand-in-hand in all things, whether at play. Engaging in the same pursuits, sharing the same joys and the same sorrows, they were bound to each other by no common feelings of mutual love"; the "sorrows" aforementioned related to their parents' marriage. It was not Duke Ernest I was continually unfaithful. In 1824, Ernest I and Louise divorced, she soon remarried to Alexander von Hanstein, Count of Pölzig and Beiersdorf, dying in 1831 at the age of thirty.
The year after her death, their father married his niece Duchess Marie of Württemberg, his sister Antoinette's daughter. Their stepmother was thus their first cousin; the duke and his new duchess were not close, would produce no children. The separation and divorce of their parents, as well as the death of their mother left the boys scarred and in close companionship with each other. In 1836, Ernest and Albert visited their matrimonially eligible cousin Princess Victoria of Kent, spending a few weeks at Windsor. Both boys, Albert were considered by his family to be a potential husband for the young princess, they were both taught to speak competent English, their father first thought that Ernest would make a better husband to Victoria than Albert, possibly
Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld
Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld Duchess of Kent and Strathearn, was a German princess and the mother of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. As the widow of Charles, Prince of Leiningen, from 1814 she served as regent of the Principality during the minority of her son from her first marriage, until her second wedding in 1818 to Prince Edward, son of King George III of the United Kingdom. Victoria was born in Coburg on 17 August 1786 in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation, she was the fourth daughter and seventh child of Franz Frederick Anton, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, Countess Augusta of Reuss-Ebersdorf. One of her brothers was Ernest I, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, another brother, Leopold future king of the Belgians, married, in 1816, Princess Charlotte of Wales, the only legitimate daughter of the future King George IV, heiress presumptive to the British throne. On 21 December 1803 at Coburg, a young Victoria married Charles, Prince of Leiningen, whose first wife, Henrietta of Reuss-Ebersdorf, had been her aunt.
The couple had two children, Prince Carl, born on 12 September 1804, Princess Feodora of Leiningen, born on 7 December 1807. Through her first marriage, she is a direct matrilineal ancestor to various members of royalty in Europe, including Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, Felipe VI of Spain, Constantine II of Greece. After the death of her first spouse, she served as regent of the Principality of Leiningen during the minority of their son, Carl; the death in 1817 of Princess Charlotte of Wales, the wife of Victoria's brother Leopold, prompted a succession crisis. With Parliament offering them a financial incentive, three of Charlotte's uncles, sons of George III, were prepared to marry. One of them, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn proposed to Victoria and she accepted; the couple were married on 29 May 1818 at Amorbach and on 11 July 1818 at Kew, a joint ceremony at which Edward's brother, the Duke of Clarence King William IV, married Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen. Shortly after their marriage, the Kents moved to Germany.
Soon after, Victoria became pregnant, the Duke and Duchess, determined to have their child born in England, raced back. Arriving at Dover on 23 April 1819, they moved into Kensington Palace, where Victoria gave birth to a daughter on 24 May 1819, Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent Queen Victoria. An efficient organiser, Sir John Conroy's planning ensured the Kents' speedy return to England in time for the birth of their first child; the Duke of Kent died of pneumonia in January 1820, six days before his father, King George III. His widow the Duchess had little cause to remain in the United Kingdom, since she did not speak the language and had a palace at home in Coburg where she could live cheaply on the revenues of her first husband. However, the British succession at this time was far from assured – of the three brothers older than Edward, the new king, George IV, the Duke of York were both estranged from their wives, who were in any case past childbearing age; the third brother, the Duke of Clarence, had yet to produce any surviving children with his wife.
The Duchess of Kent decided that she would do better by gambling on her daughter's accession than by living in Coburg and, having inherited her second husband's debts, sought support from the British government. After the death of Edward and his father, the young Princess Victoria was still only third in line for the throne, Parliament was not inclined to support yet more impoverished royalty; the provision made for the Duchess of Kent was mean: she resided in a suite of rooms in the dilapidated Kensington Palace, along with several other impoverished members of the royal family, received little financial support from the Civil List, since Parliament had vivid memories of the late Duke's extravagance. In practice, a main source of support for her was her brother, Leopold; the latter had a huge income of fifty thousand pounds per annum for life, representing an annuity allotted to him by the British Parliament on his marriage to Princess Charlotte, which had made him seem to become in due course the consort of the monarch.
After Charlotte's death, Leopold's annuity was not revoked by Parliament. In 1831, with George IV dead and the new king, William IV, over 60 and still without legitimate issue, the young princess's status as heir presumptive and the Duchess's prospective place as regent led to major increases in British state income for the Kents. A contributing factor was Leopold's designation as King of the Belgians, upon which he surrendered his British income. Together in a hostile environment, John Conroy's relationship with the Duchess was close, with him serving as her comptroller and private secretary for the next nineteen years, as well as holding the unofficial roles of public relations officer, counsellor and political agent. While it is not clear which of the two was more responsible for devising the Kensington System, it was created to govern young Victoria's upbringing; the intention was for the Duchess to be appointed regent upon Victoria's ascension and for Conroy to be created Victoria's private secretary and given a peerage.
The Duchess and Conroy continued to be unpopular with the royal family and, in 1829, the Duke of Cumberland spread rumours that they were lovers in an attempt to discredit them. The Duke of Clarence referred to Conroy as "King John", while the Duchess of Clarence wrote to the Duchess of Kent to advise that she was isolating herself from the royal family and that she must not grant Conroy too much power; the Duchess of Kent was protective, raised Victoria la
Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston
Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, was a British statesman who served twice as Prime Minister in the mid-19th century. Palmerston dominated British foreign policy during the period 1830 to 1865, when Britain was at the height of her imperial power, he held office continuously from 1807 until his death in 1865. He began his parliamentary career as a Tory, defected to the Whigs in 1830, became the first Prime Minister of the newly formed Liberal Party in 1859. Palmerston succeeded to his father's Irish peerage in 1802, he became a Tory MP in 1807. From 1809 to 1828 he served as Secretary at War, in which post he was responsible for the organisation of the finances of the army, he first attained Cabinet rank in 1827, when George Canning became Prime Minister, like other Canningites, he resigned from office one year subsequently. He served as Foreign Secretary 1830–34, 1835–41, 1846–51. In this office, Palmerston responded efficaciously to a series of conflicts in Europe, his belligerent actions as Foreign Secretary, some of which were controversial, have been considered to be prototypes of the practice of liberal interventionism.
Palmerston became Home Secretary in Aberdeen's coalition government, in 1852, subsequent to the Peelite advocacy of the appointment of Lord John Russell to the office of Foreign Secretary. As Home Secretary, Palmerston enacted various social reforms; when public antipathy over the Government's policy in the Crimean War lost the Government popular favour, in 1855, Palmerston was the only Prime Minister, able to sustain a majority in Parliament. He had two periods in office, 1855–1858 and 1859–1865, before his death at the age of 80 years, a few months subsequent to victory in a general election in which he had achieved an increased majority, he remains, to the last Prime Minister to die in office. Palmerston masterfully controlled public opinion by stimulating British nationalism, despite the fact that Queen Victoria and most of the political leadership distrusted him, he received and sustained the favour of the press and the populace, from whom he received the affectionate sobriquet'Pam'. Palmerston's alleged weaknesses included mishandling of personal relations, continual disagreements with the Queen over the royal role in determining foreign policy.
Historians consider Palmerston to be one of the greatest foreign secretaries, as a consequence of his handling of great crises, his commitment to the balance of power, which provided Britain with decisive agency in many conflicts, his analytic skills, his commitment to British interests. His policies in relation to India, Italy and Spain had extensive long-lasting beneficial consequences for Britain: although the consequences of his policies toward France, the Ottoman Empire, the United States were more ephemeral. Henry John Temple was born in his family's Westminster house to the Irish branch of the Temple family on 20 October 1784. Henry was to become The 3rd Viscount Palmerston upon his father's death in 1802, his family derived their title from the Peerage of Ireland, although the 3rd Viscount would never visit Ireland. His father was The 2nd Viscount Palmerston, an Anglo-Irish peer, his mother was Mary, a daughter of Benjamin Mee, a London merchant. From 1792 to 1794, the young future Lord Palmerston accompanied his family on a long Continental tour.
Whilst in Italy Palmerston acquired an Italian tutor, who taught him to speak and write fluent Italian. The family visited their huge country estate in the north of County Sligo in the West of Ireland, he was educated at Harrow School. Admiral Sir Augustus Clifford, 1st Bt. was a fag to Palmerston, Viscount Althorp and Viscount Duncannon and remembered Palmerston as by far the most merciful of the three. Palmerston was engaged in school fights and fellow Old Harrovians remembered Palmerston as someone who stood up to bullies twice his size. Palmerston's father took him to the House of Commons in 1799, where young Palmerston shook hands with the Prime Minister, William Pitt. Palmerston was at the University of Edinburgh, where he learnt political economy from Dugald Stewart, a friend of the Scottish philosophers Adam Ferguson and Adam Smith. Palmerston described his time at Edinburgh as producing "whatever useful knowledge and habits of mind I possess". Lord Minto wrote to Palmerston's parents that young Palmerston was charming.
Stewart wrote to a friend, saying of Palmerston: "In point of temper and conduct he is everything his friends could wish. Indeed, I cannot say that I have seen a more faultless character at this time of life, or one possessed of more amiable dispositions."Palmerston succeeded his father to the title of Viscount Palmerston on 17 April 1802, before he had turned 18. The young 3rd Lord Palmerston inherited a vast country estate in the north of County Sligo in the west of Ireland, he built Classiebawn Castle on this estate. Palmerston went to Cambridge; as a nobleman, he was entitled to take his MA without examinations, but Palmerston wished to obtain his degree through examinations. This was declined, although he was allowed to take the separate College examinations, where he obtained first-class honours. After war was declared on France in 1803, Palmerston joined the Volunteers mustered to oppose a French invasion, being one of the three officers in the unit for St John's College, he was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel Commander of the Romsey Volunteers.
In February 1806 Palmerston was defeated in the election for
Variety is a weekly American entertainment trade magazine and website owned by Penske Media Corporation. It was founded by Sime Silverman in New York in 1905 as a weekly newspaper reporting on theater and vaudeville. In 1933 it added Daily Variety, based in Los Angeles. Variety.com features breaking entertainment news, box office results, cover stories, photo galleries and more, plus a credits database, production charts and calendar, with archive content dating back to 1905. Variety has been published since December 16, 1905, when it was launched by Sime Silverman as a weekly periodical covering theater and vaudeville with its headquarters in New York City. Sime was fired by The Morning Telegraph in 1905 for panning an act which had taken out an advert for $50, said that it looked like he would have to start his own paper in order to be able to tell the truth. With a loan of $1,500 from his father-in-law, he launched Variety as editor. In addition to Sime's former employer The Morning Telegraph, other major competitors on launch were The New York Clipper and the New York Dramatic Mirror.
The original cover design, similar to the current design, was sketched by Edgar M. Miller, a scenic painter, who refused payment; the front cover contained pictures of the original editorial staff, who were Alfred Greason, Epes W Sargeant and Joshua Lowe, as well as Sime. The first issue contained a review by Sime's son Sidne known as Skigie, claimed to be the youngest critic in the world at seven years old. In 1922, Sime acquired The New York Clipper, reporting on the stage and other entertainment since 1853 and folded it two years merging some of its features into Variety. In 1922, Sime launched the Times Square Daily, which he referred to as "the world's worst daily" and soon scrapped. During that period, Variety staffers worked on all three papers. After the launch of The Hollywood Reporter in 1930, which Variety sued for alleged plagiarism in 1932, Sime launched Daily Variety in 1933, based in Hollywood, with Arthur Ungar as the editor, it replaced Variety Bulletin, issued in Hollywood on Fridays.
Daily Variety was published every day other than Sunday but on Monday to Friday. Ungar was editor until 1950, followed by Joe Schoenfeld and Thomas M. Pryor, succeeded by his son Pete; the Daily and the Weekly were run as independent newspapers, with the Daily concentrating on Hollywood news and the Weekly on U. S. and International coverage. Sime Silverman had passed on the editorship of the Weekly Variety to Abel Green as his replacement in 1931. Green remained as editor from 1931 until his death in 1973. Sime's son Sidne succeeded him as publisher of both publications. Following his death from tuberculosis in 1950, his only son Syd Silverman, was the sole heir to what was Variety Inc. Young Syd's legal guardian Harold Erichs oversaw Variety Inc. until 1956. After that date Syd Silverman managed the company as publisher of both the Weekly Variety in New York and the Daily Variety in Hollywood, until the sale of both papers in 1987 to Cahners Publishing for $64 million, he remained as publisher until 1990 when he was succeeded on Weekly Variety by Gerard A. Byrne and on Daily Variety by Sime's great grandson, Michael Silverman.
Syd became chairman of both publications. In 1953, Army Archerd's "Just for Variety" column appeared on page two of Daily Variety and swiftly became popular in Hollywood. Archerd broke countless exclusive stories, reporting from film sets, announcing pending deals, giving news of star-related hospitalizations and births; the column appeared daily for 52 years until September 1, 2005. On December 7, 1988, the editor, Roger Watkins and oversaw the transition to four-color print. Upon its launch, the new-look Variety measured one inch shorter with a washed-out color on the front; the old front-page box advertisement was replaced by a strip advertisement, along with the first photos published in Variety since Sime gave up using them in the old format in 1920: they depicted Sime and Syd. For twenty years from 1989 its editor-in-chief was Peter Bart only of the weekly New York edition, with Michael Silverman running the Daily in Hollywood. Bart had worked at Paramount Pictures and The New York Times.
In April 2009, Bart moved to the position of "vice president and editorial director", characterized online as "Boffo No More: Bart Up and Out at Variety". From mid 2009 to 2013, Timothy M. Gray oversaw the publication as Editor-in-Chief, after over 30 years of various reporter and editor positions in the newsroom. In October 2012, Reed Business Information, the periodical's owner, sold the publication to Penske Media Corporation. PMC is the owner of Deadline Hollywood, which since the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike has been considered Variety's largest competitor in online showbiz news. In October 2012, Jay Penske, Chairman and CEO of PMC, announced that the website's paywall would come down, the print publication would stay, he would invest more into Variety's digital platform in a townhall. In March 2013, Variety owner Jay Penske appointed three co-editors to oversee different parts of the publication's industry coverage; the decision was made to stop printing Daily Variety with the last printed edition published on March 19, 2013 with the headline "Variety A
Johanna Clara Louise Lehzen, better known as Baroness Louise Lehzen, was the governess, adviser and companion, to Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. Born to a Lutheran pastor in Hanover, in 1819 Lehzen entered the household of the Duchess of Kent and her husband Prince Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent and Strathearn. Five years Lehzen became governess to their only child, Princess Victoria. Lehzen became protective of her, who resided in a household dominated by the controlling Kensington System, implemented by the Duchess and her comptroller Sir John Conroy. "Dear, good Lehzen" soon came to supersede all others--including her own mother--in Alexandrina’s eyes. Princess Alexandrina became second-in-line to the British throne in 1827. Lehzen encouraged the princess to become strong and independent from the Duchess and Conroy's influence, causing friction between the two and Lehzen. Attempts to remove the governess, who had the support of Alexandrina’s uncles George IV, William IV, Leopold I of Belgium, were unsuccessful.
When Victoria became queen in 1837, Lehzen served as a sort of unofficial private secretary, enjoying apartments adjacent to Victoria's. The Queen's marriage to Prince Albert in 1840 led to significant changes in the royal household. Albert and Lehzen detested each other, after an illness of the Princess Royal in 1841, Lehzen was dismissed, her close relationship with the Queen came to an end, although the two continued to write letters to each other. Lehzen spent her last years in Hanover on a generous pension, dying in 1870. Historian K. D. Reynolds writes that Lehzen was a major influence on Victoria's character, in particular giving her the strength of will to survive her troubled childhood and life as a young queen. Johanna Clara Louise Lehzen was born in Hanover on 3 October 1784, the youngest of seven daughters and two sons of Lutheran pastor Joachim Friedrich Lehzen and his wife Melusine Palm. Forced by circumstances to work for her living since she was young, Lehzen was employed by the von Marenholtzes, an aristocratic German family, where she earned glowing references.
Based on these references, Lehzen became part of the household of Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld in December 1819, when she served as governess to twelve-year-old Princess Feodora of Leiningen, the daughter of the princess by her first marriage. Princess Victoria was married to the Prince Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, who was, at the time, fourth in line for the British throne. Lehzen and the entire household were moved to England in 1817 so that the new Duchess of Kent's child might be born there, strengthening the child's claim to the throne; the baby was a girl, christened "Alexandrina Victoria" after her mother and her godfather, Alexander I of Russia. The Duke of Kent died quite in 1820, followed by his father, King George III. Victoria's uncle, the Prince Regent, ascended the throne as King George IV. Victoria was now third in line to the throne, after her uncles the Duke of York and the Duke of Clarence, both of whom were well past middle age and neither of whom had legitimate heirs.
As the eventual heir, Victoria had to be educated accordingly. Feodora was now 14, no longer required the services of a governess. After the dismissal of nursemaid Mrs. Brock, Lehzen – as she was always known in the household – took over five-year-old Victoria's care in 1824; the Duchess and her comptroller, John Conroy made the appointment not only because Lehzen was German, but because they believed she was unlikely to operate independently of their wishes. Twentieth century historian Christopher Hibbert describes Lehzen as "a handsome woman, despite her pointed nose and chin, emotional, humourless." Though she at first feared Lehzen's stern manner, "dear, good Lehzen" soon came to occupy a place in Victoria's heart that superseded all others, including her own mother, the Duchess of Kent. Lehzen encouraged the princess to distrust her mother and her mother's friends, to maintain her independence; the governess was uninterested in money and lacked ambition for herself, instead choosing to devote her time and energy to the princess.
Victoria took to calling Lehzen "Mother" and "dearest Daisy" in private, writing Lehzen was "the most affectionate, devoted and disinterested friend I have." As part of the controlling Kensington System devised by Conroy, after 1824 Victoria was to be accompanied by Lehzen at all times during the day. In 1827, the Duke of York died, making the Duke of Clarence heir presumptive, Victoria second-in-line to the throne. Conroy complained that the princess should not be surrounded with commoners, leading George IV to award them both titles. George IV himself died in 1830, was duly succeeded by his brother the Duke of Clarence, who became King William IV. William formally recognised Victoria as his heir presumptive. According to Lehzen, around this time the famous scene took place, in which Lehzen slipped a copy of the genealogy of the House of Hanover into one of the princess's lesson books. After perusing it for some time, Victoria came to see that her father had been next in line after the king, that Queen Adelaide had no surviving children.
This was the first time Victoria came to realise the destiny, assumed by many since her birth.