Historical Investigation

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To what extent did Prince Albert, influence Queen Victoria’s cultural and scientific decisions from 1840-1861?

A. Plan of Investigation

The investigation asseses to what extent did Prince Albert, influence Queen Victoria’s cultural and scientific decisions from 1840-1861. In order to answer this question Queen Victoria’s accomplishments will be investigated and with the help of several reliable sources the accomplishments that were influenced by Prince Albert will be analyzed. My research was narrowed to the years 1840-1861 because those were the years when Prince Albert ruled alongside the queen. Prince albert’s influenced the Queen over cultural and scientific changes. The two sources used for the evaluation of sources are The Origin of Queen Victoria's Civil List: What Did She Do With It? And Address to Prince Albert from Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy.

B. Summary of Evidence

* In 1840, his influence was replaced by that of Prince Albert. The German prince never really won the favour of the British public, and only after 17 years was he given official recognition, with the title of 'prince consort'. Victoria nonetheless relied heavily on Albert and it was during his lifetime that she was most active as a ruler. Britain was evolving into a constitutional monarchy in which the monarch had few powers and was expected to remain above party politics, although Victoria did sometimes express her views very forcefully in private. (Monarchy)

* Albert took an active interest in the arts, science, trade and industry; the project for which he is best remembered was the Great Exhibition of 1851, the profits from which helped to establish the South Kensington museums complex in London. (Monarchy)

* Although conservative in some respects - like many at the time she opposed giving women the vote - on social issues, she tended to favour measures to improve the lot of the poor, such as the Royal Commission on housing. She also supported many charities involved in education, hospitals and other areas. (Monarchy)

* We returned to our place and Albert told Lord Breadalbane to declare the Exhibition opened, which he did in a loud voice saying "Her Majesty commands me to declare the Exhibition opened", when there was a flourish of trumpets, followed by immense cheering. Everyone was astounded and delighted. The return was equally satisfactory - the crowd most enthusiastic and perfect order kept. We reached the Palace at 20 minutes past 1 and went out on the balcony, being loudly cheered. That we felt happy and thankful, - I need not say - proud of all that had passed and of my beloved one's success. Dearest Albert's name is for ever immortalized and the absurd reports of dangers of every kind and sort, set about by a set of people…” (Victoria)

* “And the Prince consort had encouraged increased expectations by his energetic public support of worthy causes, from the building of working class cottages to the celebration of free trade through the Crystal Palace Exhibition” (Kuhn 660)

* “Your Royal Highness is well known to us as the patron of those objects for the promotions of which our Academy was founded. Not only recognizing the nobleness of intellectual pursuits, but yourself a participator in the pleasures which attend them, you have done so much to encourage the efforts and to reward the success of all who cultivate them within these realms. (Phipps and Albert 392)

* Albert, who would eventually hold the title Prince Consort, became respected for his intellect and interest in helping society improve in the mid-1800s. He came to wield influence in British political and diplomatic affairs. In 1848, when much of Europe was being shaken by revolutionary movement, Albert cautioned that the rights of working people had to be seriously considered. He was a progressive voice at a crucial time. Thanks to Albert's interest in technology, he was the main force behind the Great...
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