in the Works of
Victoria: An Intimate Biography
New York: Truman Talley Books / E.P.Dutton, 1992
…The Court returned to Windsor for Christmas, which was celebrated in the German fashion. Gifts were placed on tables under small Christmas Trees with each table and tree, decorated with candles, sweetmeats, and cakes hung by ribbons and paper chains, intended for a different recipient…
Albert imported small trees from Coburg, and turned the
Royal Family´s Christmases into semipublic events. The fashion caught on,
popularized by the new illustrated papers...
On the dreariest Christmas Eve of her life (following the death of Prince Albert), Victoria wrote again to her uncle from Osborne. She has been considering her future conduct as Queen.
I am...anxious to repeat one thing, and that one is
my firm resolve. My irrevocable decision...that his wishes - his plans - about everything, his views about every thing are to be my law! And no human power will make me swerve from what he decided and wished....I am also
determined that no one person, may he be ever so good, ever so devoted
among my servants - is to lead or guide or dictate to me. I know he would
disapprove of it. And I live on with him, for him; in fact I am only outwardly
separated from him, and only for a time.
A Fenian attempt on December 13 to extricate Irishmen
from Clerkenwell Prison resulted in …innocent casualties....With Osborne House
on an island....Grey urged the Queen to leave for the safety of Windsor Castle,
but she preferred Osborne for Christmas, and the Government had to settle
for extra police, and ships to patrol the coast…
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