Author Topic: Queen Victoria's Journals  (Read 9021 times)

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Offline katmaxoz

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Queen Victoria's Journals
« on: May 25, 2012, 06:31:43 PM »
The royal archives have put Queen Victoria's journals in their various volumes on line at:

http://www.queenvictoriasjournals.org/home.do

They haven't all been transcribed yet, but if you are up to reading the original hand writing scans of each page are online. It must have been a massive job to get them even this far online. It's great to see goodies coming out of the Royal archives like this.



Offline darius

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2012, 01:58:34 PM »
When reading the account of The Queen launching the website I was struck by how incredible it was that HM would actually have a personal recollection of Princess Beatrice, the editor of the original diaries as she died when HM was in her teens.

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2012, 02:26:03 PM »
This was posted:

"A message from HM Queen Elizabeth II
In this the year of my Diamond Jubilee, I am delighted to be able to present, for the first time, the complete on-line collection of Queen Victoria's journals from the Royal Archives.

These diaries cover the period from Queen Victoria's childhood days to her Accession to the Throne, marriage to Prince Albert, and later, her Golden and Diamond Jubilees.

Thirteen volumes in Victoria's own hand survive, and the majority of the remaining volumes were transcribed after Queen Victoria's death by her youngest daughter, Princess Beatrice, on her mother's instructions.

It seems fitting that the subject of the first major public release of material from the Royal Archives is Queen Victoria, who was the first Monarch to celebrate a Diamond Jubilee.

It is hoped that this historic collection will make a valuable addition to the unique material already held by the Bodleian Libraries at Oxford University, and will be used to enhance our knowledge and understanding of the past. "
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Offline Vecchiolarry

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2012, 05:41:00 PM »
Hi,

The Queen would have known three of Queen Victoria's children - Princess Beatrice, Princess Louise and Prince Arthur......
She would have been a teenager when all of them died.

More interesting still is that The Queen Mother knew Queen Alexandra, The Dowager Empress and Queen Marie of Romania, among others....

Larry

Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2012, 08:20:04 PM »
Did this release include any comentary about how the journals were edited, particularly by Beatrice, to alter, exclude, and otherwise revise the actual documents?
HerrKaiser

Offline CountessKate

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2012, 03:17:09 AM »
Did this release include any comentary about how the journals were edited, particularly by Beatrice, to alter, exclude, and otherwise revise the actual documents?

The following page details the versions of the journals which exist, and how they were treated:  http://www.queenvictoriasjournals.org/info/about-versions.do

The journals from 1837 to 1901 are entirely the work of Princess Beatrice, who edited them in accordance with the Queen's wishes as her literary executor.  Lord Esher had a typescript made of the original journals from 1832 to February 1840 when Queen Victoria married Prince Albert which were not edited, and exerpts from these journals were made into the book 'The girlhood of Queen Victoria' which I have to say was a rivetting.  The journals get very much duller when they became written more for public consumption - in 'Dearest Missy' the Duchess of Edinburgh writes of Queen Victoria more or less dictating her diary entry to Princess Beatrice.

Offline Thomas_Hesse

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2012, 01:42:54 AM »
The journals get very much duller when they became written more for public consumption - in 'Dearest Missy' the Duchess of Edinburgh writes of Queen Victoria more or less dictating her diary entry to Princess Beatrice.

I think she would dictate only in the final years when her eyeside began to fail rapidly - in one of the last entries she writes: felt very depressed for I see so badly.

Ernst Ludwig of Hesse recalles a story from the mid 1890ies when the Queen was expected to go to join the dinner party ("that night we waited longer for her than usual") but before the messenger left she wanted to write a short letter to congratulate the Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar on a jubilee.
When finishing the letter she realised that she had written over the same line two times and was at the same time caught between her desire to congratulate the Grand Duke right in time - and her being hungry. So finally she started crying :)
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Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2012, 12:49:39 PM »
In actuality, how did Beatrice "edit" QV's letters/diaries? Did Beatrice literally take each and re-write them in her own hand? Were the originals then destroyed?
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Offline CountessKate

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2012, 03:07:19 AM »
In actuality, how did Beatrice "edit" QV's letters/diaries? Did Beatrice literally take each and re-write them in her own hand? Were the originals then destroyed?

Beatrice wrote a redacted and edited version in her own hand (although apparently her niece Helena Victoria assisted in a few cases) and then destroyed the original journals.  The only material which survived from the originals were the illustrations Victoria drew which were cut out and inserted into the edited journals.  If you look at the actual pages on the internet all they are all handwritten.  Transcriptions are being created gradually but are still a long way off for being complete for the whole.

Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2012, 10:40:24 AM »
Princess Beatrice clearly took the job of editing very seriously and very conscientiously. The journals are beautifully written & I have yet to come across a spelling mistake or a crossing out. Unfortunately what I presume are Princess Helena Victoria's entries are a real mess, so untidy with plenty of crossings out. Perhaps Beatrice was horrified (I know I would be!) and she didn't ask Helena Victoria again.
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Offline CountessKate

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2012, 03:35:19 PM »
Princess Beatrice clearly took the job of editing very seriously and very conscientiously. The journals are beautifully written & I have yet to come across a spelling mistake or a crossing out. Unfortunately what I presume are Princess Helena Victoria's entries are a real mess, so untidy with plenty of crossings out. Perhaps Beatrice was horrified (I know I would be!) and she didn't ask Helena Victoria again.

Almost any historian would have preferred a messy copy which kept a greater proportion of the originals intact; beautiful handwriting cannot compensate for what has been called a 'horrific act of literary vandalism' (Helen Rappaport in 'Queen Victoria: A biographical companion') which both Queen Victoria and King George protested. 

Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2012, 01:02:59 AM »

 beautiful handwriting cannot compensate for what has been called a 'horrific act of literary vandalism'

Well said and spot on. In fact, the "beauty" of the re-write was likely, in Beatrice's view, more important than the historic accuracy of the documents. Given the time frame and political stirrings of the era, it's quite likely that QV's very pro German feelings and attitudes were deleted by Beatrice or replaced by thoughts more aligned with the British feelings of the time.
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Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2012, 01:14:02 AM »
Princess Beatrice clearly took the job of editing very seriously and very conscientiously. The journals are beautifully written & I have yet to come across a spelling mistake or a crossing out. Unfortunately what I presume are Princess Helena Victoria's entries are a real mess, so untidy with plenty of crossings out. Perhaps Beatrice was horrified (I know I would be!) and she didn't ask Helena Victoria again.

Almost any historian would have preferred a messy copy which kept a greater proportion of the originals intact; beautiful handwriting cannot compensate for what has been called a 'horrific act of literary vandalism' (Helen Rappaport in 'Queen Victoria: A biographical companion') which both Queen Victoria and King George protested. 

What are you going on about? That's blatantly obvious.  ::) Are you stating that Helena Victoria'ss entries kept a great proportion of the originals? If so how do you know this?
And in actual fact Queen Mary & King George did not protest, they felt unable to intervene, mores the pity.
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Offline CountessKate

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2012, 03:10:23 AM »
I suppose I was surprised that anything about the matter could be deemed admirable - on the lines of 'how beautifully Lizzie Borden wielded that axe'.  Moreover, Princess Beatrice had been her mother's companion and amenuensis for a great many years, knew her handwriting and turns of expression very well, and had actually written her diary entries for her for at least 3 years previously - it is unsurprising she wrote a much smoother version than Princess Helena Victoria, especially as Princess Beatrice had the editorial control and her niece didn't.  The latter would surely have been more hesitant not only about Victoria's handwriting, but also about what to leave in or take out at her aunt's direction.

Offline Eddie_uk

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Re: Queen Victoria's Journals
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2012, 06:25:15 AM »
Perhaps - sad that we will never know. I'm sure Helena Victoria helped her grandmother write her journal too. The fact that Beatrice delegated the task to Helena Victoria suggests she had faith in her neice to edit accordingly.....

Of course it was a 'horrific act of literary vandalism' but at the end of the day Princess Beatrice was following her mothers wishes which is why King George & Queen Mary felt unable to intervene. Perhaps Queen Victoria might have wished Beatrice to have kept the journal enteries as original as possible and only remove very personal information.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2012, 06:29:34 AM by Eddie_uk »
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