ABSTRACT

Theforemostpersonalityofallwas,ofcourse,QueenVictoria(1819-1901).2 Shehadsucceededtothethronein1837,andalreadybythelate1860sit wascomingtoseemasifshehadalwaysbeenqueen.Thissenseofan increasinglylongreignwasnoteverywhereacauseofloyalenthusiasm.The Englishrepublicanmovementreachedapeakabout1870.3Republicanismhad beenstimulatedbythebeliefingeneralthatanelectedheadofstatewould bemoreappropriatetothe'democratic'spiritofthetimes;andbyfeelingin particularthattaxpayers'moneywasfinancingtheidlenessanddissipationof thePrinceofWales,andbyhostilitytothewithdrawalofthequeenherself frompublicfunctions.VictoriahadgoneintoperpetualmourningforPrince Albert,whohaddiedin1861.RepublicansrangedfromSirCharlesDilke,a youngradicalbaronet,totradeunionistswhowantedbetteropportunitiesand conditionsforworkingmen.ThecostofprovidingforVictoria'seightchildrenas theygrewupofferedeasygroundforrepublicancomplaints-in1870tenroyalties werereceivingannuitiesworth£11,000;by1900sixteenweregetting£168,000. ButthenearlyfatalandwidelypublicizedillnessofthePrinceofWalesfrom typhoidattheendof1871suddenlydestroyedthealwayslimitedpopularityof therepublicanmovement.