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Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emmanuel; 26 August 1819 – 14 December 1861) was the consort of Queen Victoria from their marriage on 10 February 1840 until his death in 1861. Albert was born in the Saxon duchy of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld to a family connected to many of Europe's ruling monarchs.
02/04/2014 · Albert Francis Charles Augustus Emmanuel of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was born on August 26, 1819, at Schloss Rosenau, in Bavaria. He was the younger son of the duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, who divorced ...
- Early Life
- Consort of The Queen
- Reformer and Innovator
- Family and Public Life
- Illness and Death
- Titles, Styles, Honours and Arms
Albert (left) with his elder brother Ernest and mother Louise, shortly before her exile from court Albert was born at Schloss Rosenau, near Coburg, Germany, the second son of Ernest III, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, and his first wife, Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. Albert's future wife, Queen Victoria, was born in the same year with the assistance of the same midwife. Albert was baptised into the Lutheran Evangelical Church on 19 September 1819 in the Marble Hall at Schloss Rosenau with water taken from the local river, the Itz. His godparents were his paternal grandmother, the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld; his maternal grandfather, the Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg; the Emperor of Austria; the Duke of Teschen; and Emanuel, Count of Mensdorff-Pouilly. In 1825, Albert's great-uncle, Frederick IV, Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg, died. His death led to a re-arrangement of the Saxon duchies the following year and Albert's father became reigning duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha....
Portrait by John Partridge, 1840 By 1836, the idea of marriage between Albert and his cousin, Victoria, had arisen in the mind of their ambitious uncle, Leopold, who had been King of the Belgians since 1831. At this time, Victoria was the heiress presumptive to the British throne. Her father, Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent, the fourth son of King George III, had died when she was a baby, and her elderly uncle, King William IV, had no legitimate children. Her mother, the Duchess of Kent, Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, was the sister of both Albert's father—the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha—and Leopold, King of the Belgians. Leopold arranged for his sister, Victoria's mother, to invite the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and his two sons to visit her in May 1836, with the purpose of meeting Victoria. King William IV, however, disapproved of any match with the Coburgs, and instead favoured the suit of Prince Alexander, second son of the Prince of Orange. Victoria was well aware of the...
The position in which the prince was placed by his marriage, while one of distinction, also offered considerable difficulties; in Albert's own words, "I am very happy and contented; but the difficulty in filling my place with the proper dignity is that I am only the husband, not the master in the house." The Queen's household was run by her former governess, Baroness Lehzen. Albert referred to her as the "House Dragon", and manoeuvred to dislodge the Baroness from her position. Within two months of the marriage, Victoria was pregnant. Albert started to take on public roles; he became President of the Society for the Extinction of Slavery (slavery had already been abolished throughout the British Empire, but was still lawful in places such as the United States and the colonies of France); and helped Victoria privately with her government paperwork. In June 1840, while on a public carriage ride, Albert and the pregnant Victoria were shot at by Edward Oxford, who was later judged insan...
In 1847, Albert was elected Chancellor of the University of Cambridge after a close contest with the Earl of Powis, who was killed accidentally by his own son during a pheasant shoot the following year. Albert used his position as Chancellor to campaign successfully for reformed and more modern university curricula, expanding the subjects taught beyond the traditional mathematics and classics to include modern history and the natural sciences. That summer, Victoria and Albert spent a rainy holiday in the west of Scotland at Loch Laggan, but heard from their doctor, Sir James Clark, that his son had enjoyed dry, sunny days further east at Balmoral Castle. The tenant of Balmoral, Sir Robert Gordon, died suddenly in early October, and Albert began negotiations to take over the lease from the owner, the Earl Fife. In May the following year, Albert leased Balmoral, which he had never visited, and in September 1848 he, his wife and the older children went there for the first time. They ca...
In 1852, a timely legacy from eccentric miser John Camden Neild made it possible for Albert to obtain the freehold of Balmoral, and as usual he embarked on an extensive program of improvements. The same year, he was appointed to several of the offices left vacant by the death of the Duke of Wellington, including the mastership of Trinity House and the colonelcy of the Grenadier Guards. With Wellington out of the picture, Albert was able to propose and campaign for modernisation of the army, which was long overdue. Thinking that the military was unready for war, and that Christian rule was preferable to Islamic rule, Albert counselled a diplomatic solution to conflict between the Russian and Ottoman empires. Palmerston was more bellicose, and favoured a policy that would prevent further Russian expansion. Palmerston was manoeuvred out of the cabinet in December 1853, but at about the same time a Russian fleet attacked the Ottoman fleet at anchor at Sinop. The London press depicted th...
Albert was seriously ill with stomach cramps in August 1859. During a trip to Coburg in the autumn of 1860 he was driving alone in a carriage drawn by four horses that suddenly bolted. As the horses continued to gallop toward a stationary wagon waiting at a railway crossing, Albert jumped for his life from the carriage. One of the horses was killed in the collision, and Albert was badly shaken, though his only physical injuries were cuts and bruises. He told his brother and eldest daughter that he sensed his time had come. In 1861, Victoria's mother and Albert's aunt, the Duchess of Kent, died and Victoria was grief-stricken; Albert took on most of the Queen's duties, despite being ill himself with chronic stomach trouble. The last public event he presided over was the opening of the Royal Horticultural Gardens on 5 June 1861. In August, Victoria and Albert visited the Curragh Camp, Ireland, where the Prince of Wales was doing army service. At the Curragh, the Prince of Wales was in...
The Queen's grief was overwhelming, and the tepid feelings the public had felt previously for Albert were replaced by sympathy. Victoria wore black in mourning for the rest of her long life, and Albert's rooms in all his houses were kept as they had been, even with hot water brought in the morning, and linen and towels changed daily. Such practices were not uncommon in the houses of the very rich. Victoria withdrew from public life and her seclusion eroded some of Albert's work in attempting to re-model the monarchy as a national institution setting a moral, if not political, example. Albert is credited with introducing the principle that the British royal family should remain above politics. Before his marriage to Victoria, she supported the Whigs; for example, early in her reign Victoria managed to thwart the formation of a Tory government by Sir Robert Peel by refusing to accept substitutions which Peel wanted to make among her ladies-in-waiting. Albert's body was temporarily ent...
Titles and styles 1. 26 August 1819 – 12 November 1826: His Serene HighnessPrince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, Duke of Saxony 2. 12 November 1826 – 6 February 1840: His Serene HighnessPrince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duke of Saxony 3. 6 February 1840 – 25 June 1857: His Royal HighnessPrince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duke of Saxony 4. 25 June 1857 – 14 December 1861: His Royal HighnessThe Prince Consort Honours British Empire 1. KG: Knight of the Garter, 16 December 1839 2. KT: Knight of the Thistle 3. KP: Knight of St Patrick 4. GMB: Great Master of the Order of the Bath 5. KSI: Knight Companion of the Star of India 6. GCMG: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George Foreign 1. Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece Arms Coat of arms of Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha as granted in 1840 by the College of Arms On his marriage to Queen Victoria in 1840, Prince Albert was granted his own personal coat of arms, which was the royal coat of arms...Victoria, Princess Royal, German EmpressEdward VIIPrincess Alice, Grand Duchess of HesseAlfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
09/12/2018 · Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha was born to Ernest III, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld and Princess Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg at Schloss Rosenau. He was the couple’s second son; Ernest had been born in 1818. 1819 (19th September) Albert was christened Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emmanuel at Schloss Rosenau.
- Early Life
- King of The Belgians
Albert was born in Brussels, the fifth child and second son of Prince Philippe, Count of Flanders. Albert grew up in the Palace of the Count of Flanders, initially as third in the line of succession to the Belgian throne as his reigning uncle Leopold II's son had already died. When, however, Albert's older brother, Prince Baudouin of Belgium, who had been subsequently prepared for the throne, also died young, Albert, at the age of 16, unexpectedly became second in line (after his father) to the Belgian Crown. From there, he prepared himself for the heavy burden of kingship.
After the death of his uncle, King Leopold II, Albert ascended to the Belgian throne in December 1909, taking the oath in both Dutch and French. Unlike his uncle, he and his wife became popular monarchs in Belgium due to their unassuming, simple and Catholic lifestyle. From the beginning of Albert's reign, he gave particular attention to reforms in the Belgian Congo and the Belgian military, believing that Belgium's position in the world had to be strengthened if it wished to survive. As tensions in Europe grew after the assassination of Archduke Franz-Ferdinand of Austria, Albert sought to ensure that Belgium remained neutral and unviolated if war came. One of his efforts was to send a personal letter to Kaiser Wilhelm, in which he asked the Emperor to respect Belgian neutrality.
On the second of August 1914, the German government sent an ultimatum to Belgium, citing that they were to give free passage to the German armies which were going to invade France from Belgian territory. The next day, the 3rd of August, King Albert officially refused the German demands, and the Belgian government severed all diplomatic ties with the German Empire. While the Belgian army under King Albert were able to slow down the German armies considerably, it became apparant that it could stand little resistance against the overwhelming German forces. By 12 October, the remaining Belgian forces took up defensive positions behind the Yser river. Albert, fearing for a German breakthrough, ordered the sluices of the Nieuwpoort to be opened which resulted in a large chunk of the coastal plains to be flooded. The German armies their advance was halted as a result. The Belgian front would remain quasi static for the next four years, up until 1919. 'The Great Offensive' struck through th...
After the French capitulation on the 4th of October, the remaining pro-war voices within the Belgian government were silenced, and the Belgian government capitulated the day after. While Albert realized that the war had been lost, he was much less keen on the defeatist mindset that most of his Ministers had. As a result, Albert sought the support of the United Kingdom to ensure that Belgium's interests were defended in the peace treaty that was to follow. Despite having various successful meetings with King George Vand members of the British government, the fate of Belgium and it's throne remained uncertain.
During a period of negotiations for the Treaty of Versailles, Albert was reached out to by German diplomats, who offered him and his government a set of demands and terms that were to be included within the Treaty if they accepted. The terms allowed for Albert to keep the throne but transformed Belgium into a rump state and de facto protectorate of the German Empire. Albert, citing that he would not allow Belgium to become a protectorate of Germany, refused the proposed terms. Kaiser Wilhelm, who had hoped that Albert would accept, then quickly ended all diplomatic negotiations with King Albert and the Belgian government and sought to establish an entirely new puppet regime in the region instead. As a result of the Treaties of Versailles, the Belgian state and throne were abolished and replaced by the new Kingdom of Flanders-Wallonia, headed by King Adalbert, who was the third son of Kaiser Wilhelm. The Belgian government soon fell apart, with several Ministers and politicians resig...
- Birth and Early Life
- Marriage and Children
- Royal Duties and Accomplishments of Prince Albert, Prince Consort
- Prince Albert’s Illness and Death
He was born to Ernest I and Princess Louise, on 26th August 1819. His birth took place at Coburg, Bavaria. Coincidentally, would-be wife (Victoria) had the same year of birth. There are reports that the same midwife attended to their birth. Though Albert and Victoria were cousins, it appeared they were destined to be life partners right from birth. A Lutheran Church baptized Albert in September of 1819. When Albert’s uncle who was a Duke of Saxe-Gotha (Frederick IV) died, Albert’s dad became a Duke who reigned over two states: Saxe-Coburg and Saxe-Gotha. Albert had an elder sibling called Ernest. The two brothers lived their youthful days together, despite the rocky relationship of their parents which ended up in a divorce. Their exiled mother never caught sight of her children again. She later remarried but died of cancer in 1832. She was only 30 years old at the time of her death.
Like other royal children, Albert and his siblings were given private tuition at the comfort of their residence. Their personal tutor was Christoph Florschutz. Albert later furthered his education at Brussels (the Belgian capital). Again, following the educational footsteps of many royal princes, Albert went to the University of Bonn. There, he took courses in law, philosophy, art history as well as political economy. Aside from academia, Albert had a passion for music. He also took an interest in sports and riding.
The union between Albert and Victoria was written as early as 1821. Albert’s paternal grandma wrote a letter to him which suggested that he was the perfect man to marry his pretty cousin. 15 years later, Leopold, their great uncle also envisioned the marriage between the two cousins. At that time, it became evident that Victoria was set to be crowned queen of the British throne. Leopold played a big role in helping connect Victoria and Albert. It has been said that Queen Victoriawrote a letter to thank Leopold for bringing the handsome Albert into her life. Victoria went on to heap praises on Albert, describing him as a perfect man who would bring joy to her life. The two became romantically obsessed with each other, despite the fact that they were not officially engaged. At the age of 20, Victoria was crowned queen. While on the throne, she respected Albert’s educational background, viewing him as one who would be very beneficial in her life. In 1839, Victoria asked for Albert’s ha...
Prince Albert soon found himself in difficult times with regard to his marriage to the queen. Albert felt powerless. He was quoted as saying that, even though he was the husband, he wasn’t the boss he deserved to be. The reason is that Victoria had an assistant who took charge of many household affairs. This limited Albert’s status as a husband to the queen. Consequently, Albert took steps and got the queen’s governess to pack out from her position. When the Queen got pregnant, 2 months after the marriage, Albert became involved in public duties. He became the leader of a slavery abolishment group. At the same time, he assisted the queen with clerical duties. Albert worked to promote science, art, as well as commerce and industrialization. In 1852, He played key roles in establishing an exhibition which was meant to celebrate the industrial revolution and the enlargement of the British Empire. He also helped to bring lasting peace between Britain and the U.S.A, when the two countrie...
Albert complained of severe abdominal pains in August of 1859. Before that, he had survived a wagon crash. He singly rode on a wagon which was pulled by 4 horses and got involved in a collision with another wagon packed close to a railway. Albert sustained minor injuries because he jumped off the wagon earlier. The crash killed 1 of the horses. That was not the first time he had come close to death. Albert and Queen Victoria narrowly missed death in June 1840. A mentally unstable man shot at them while they rode through town. Luckily, they escaped unhurt. In a conversation with his brother and one of his daughters, Albert predicted his early death after the accident. When the queen’s mother passed away in March 1861, Albert continued to undertake royal duties, even though his stomach pains worsened over time. He was diagnosed with typhoid and died on 14th December 1861.
Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha 1844–1893 Albert The Prince Consort 1819 1861 2nd son of Ernest I: Title held from father's ascension until his death. Consort of the United Kingdom 1840–1861 Ferdinand King Ferdinand II 1816 1885 1st son of Ferdinand: Title held from father's ascension until his death. King of Portugal 1837–1853 August: 1818 1881