Queen Victoria’s funeral is almost a grand message

Years ago Queen Elizabeth II passed away at her Dear Balmoral on September 8, 2022, the state plans for her death, called London Bridge Operation, has been specified. This foresight, so typical of the queen’s pragmatic, no-nonsense personality, is a far cry from the bewilderment that greeted the death of Britain’s last great queen.

In January 1901, Queen Victoria, 81, lay dying at Osborne House, on the Isle of Wight. Based on Stewart Richardsreally attractive Curtains down in front of her Of His Majesty, As the queen lay peacefully while surrounded by her family, in another room the courtiers were frantically trying to figure out what would happen next.

“Since the last death of a king occurred in 1837, no one seems to know what the procedure was,” Written Sir Frederick Ponsonby, an ordinary queen and assistant secretary. “We spent the evening looking for what was done when George IV and William IV died.”

There are no photographs for reference, and few survivors remember the death of the last king, who served the royal family with great loss. “The ignorance of historical precedent among men whose business is known is great,” Reginald Brett, Viscount Esher write boldly.

They have very little time to learn. At 6:30 p.m. on January 22, Queen Victoria died while being held by her grandson Kaiser Wilhelm II. Although Victoria’s oldest son, now King Edward VII, tried to control the story by publishing the news of his mother’s death, the media frenzy quickly took hold. “I was told the scene down the hill to Cowes [on the Isle of Wight] shameful,” wrote Ponsonby, according to Richards. “Reporters on horse-drawn carriages and bicycles were seen racing to the post office in East Cowes, and the men shouted as they ran, ‘The Queen is dead.'”

Right from the start, things didn’t seem right. The Queen had asked her not to be mummified, so a coffin had to be ordered quickly. However, when the undertaker’s assistant arrived, it was discovered that he had not carried the coffin as expected, as he claimed that he needed to take the deceased queen’s measurements.

The tenacious Kaiser Wilhelm, already despised by most of his relatives in England for his unpleasant personality, was disgusted. “It’s always been like this,” he said angrily, according to Richards. “When an ordinary, humble person dies, everything is arranged quite easily and with reverence and care. When a ‘personality’ dies, you all lose your head and make silly mistakes that you should be ashamed of. The same thing happens in Germany as it does in England: You are all the same! “

Not wanting to let the rude aide touch the sacred queen, the kaiser and other courtiers solved the problem on their own.

“If the event were less serious and formal, there would be much humor in the emperor’s zeal for the rather dull undertaker’s assistant,” said Randall Davidson, Bishop of Winchester remember. “The emperor was afraid of his poor compatriots who were powerless to obey. The man was simply terrified. He was an unsuitable person, as I see it, so we refused to leave him (as he wished) in the room to take the necessary measurements, and in fact the measurements were taken. shown by the emperor, [Sir James] Reid, and myself, under the direction of the man, who stood by and told us exactly what he wanted. It was quite a curious sight. “

A fight also broke out between Henry Fitzalan-Howard, 15th Duke of Norfolk, and Edward Hyde Villiers, Lord Chamberlain – over who had the right to arrange the royal funeral. The Duke of Norfolk, also an earl marshal, prevailed (current earl marshal, Edward Fitzalan-Howard, 18th Duke of Norfolk, currently arranging funerals for Queen Elizabeth II), causing the blood to bad between the two factions. “Lord Chamberlain is deeply sorry, and will likely refuse to assist,” Richards said. “Indeed, it would be fortunate if these two ceremonial dignitaries did not come to the heartbroken.”

The Duke of Norfolk is fortunate to have some guidance. Three years before her death, Queen Victoria wrote that she wanted a state funeral in honor of the military — royal funerals that follow the same pattern to this day. She wants it done “with respect – but simply.” Curiously, for a woman haunted by death and mourning – who had worn black for decades in honor of her beloved husband, Prince Albert’s early death – Victoria requested a white funeral, no public located in the state and no hearse to carry her coffin.

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