Today (May 24th) marks the 194th anniversary of Queen Victoria's Birthday. It always saddens me how often I see Victoria portrayed as the stereotypical post Albert old lady in black, especially during events that are aiming at the era before Albert's death (pre 1861). So to celebrate her birthday here are my favourite images of Queen Victoria during her heyday, from the beginning of her reign at the age of 18 to the death of her beloved Albert in December 1861 when she was 42.
Queen Victoria c.1839
Queen Victoria by John Partridge 1840 the Royal Collection
Queen Victoria, Henry Pierce Bone, 1840. Photo: Royal Collection
Queen Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria) (1819-1901) by Charles Brocky in 1841.
Queen Victoria, William Essex, 1841. Photo: Royal Collection.
by Mrs Edwin Dalton (Magdalena Ross), after Sir William Charles Ross
Queen Victoria (1819-1901) by Robert Thorburn in 1844
Queen Victoria (1819-1901) by Franz Xaver Winterhalter in 1845.
The Royal Collection
Queen Victoria by unknown artist. 1840s.
Queen Victoria 1845
Queen Victoria 1847 Franz Xaver Winterhalter
Queen Victoria, 1850s.
The Cousins: Queen Victoria and Victoire, Duchesse de Nemours by Franz Xaver Winterhalter 1852
5th July 1854 Photograph showing a three-quarters length right profile portrait of a seated Queen Victoria at Buckingham Palace. She rests a photographic portrait of Prince Albert on her lap. In July 1854, Queen Victoria commissioned Duppa to take a photograph of her, as a surprise for her husband. The portrait shows the Queen holding a framed copy of a portrait of Prince Albert taken by the same photographer a few months earlier.
The Royal Collection
Queen Victoria photographed in her wedding gown by Roger Fenton in 1854
Queen Victoria 1855 Franz Xaver Winterhalter
Queen Victoria 1856 by Charles Lucien Louis Muller.
Handtinted image of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria c.1850s
Vicky with Victoria 1857
Queen Victoria c.1850s
Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, ca 1860
1860 Queen Victoria by John Jabez Edwin Mayall (The Royal Collection)
Queen Victoria with Princess Beatrice c.1861
Queen Victoria by John Jabez Edwin Mayall 1861
Queen Victoria via Grand Ladies