24th May 1833 – Diary Entry – Victoria’s 14th Birthday

Extract from Queen Victoria’s diary, Friday 24th May 1833-

…To-day is my birthday. I am to-day fourteen years old! How very old!! I awoke at 1/2 past 5 and got up at 1/2 past 7. I received from Mamma a lovely hyacinth brooch and a china pen tray. From Uncle Leopold a very kind letter, also one from Aunt Louisa and sister Feodora…. At 1/2 past 2 came the Royal Family. The Queen gave me a pair of Diamond Earrings from the King. She herself gave me a brooch of turquoises and gold in the shape of a bow…. At 1/2 past 7 we went… to a Juvenile Ball that was given in honour of my birthday at St James’s by the King and Queen. We went into the Closet. Soon after, the doors were opened, and the King leading me went into the ball-room. Madame Bourdin was there as dancing-mistress. Victorie was also there, as well as many other children whom I knew…. I danced with my cousin George Cambridge, then with Prince George Lieven, then with Lord Brook, then with Lord March, then with Lord Athlone, then with Lord Fitzroy Lennox, then with Lord Emlyn. We then went to supper. It was 1/2 past 11; the King leading me again. I sat between the King and the Queen. We left supper soon. My health was drunk. I then danced one more quadrille with Lord Paget. I danced in all 8 quadrilles. We came home at 1/2 past 12. I was VERY much amused….

Notes – Victoria’s Uncle Leopold was her Mothers brother, and King of the Belgians. The Victorie mentioned is Victorie Conroy, Daughter of John Conroy (the Duchess of Kent’s comptroller). Victorie would have been a companion to Victoria as a child, but Victoria disliked her. George Cambridge was the son of Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge, and was hoped by King William (and much of the British Royal Family) to eventually marry Victoria, but the match never happened.

 

Source – Kensington Palace Essential Tales, Historic Royal Palaces

Featured Image – painting of Victoria, 1833 by George Hayter

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