Queen Victoria desired a love story to last a lifetime, a happily ever-after marriage with the one and only king of his heart, Prince Albert. But it wasn’t meant to be, for at the tender age of 41, 20 years after they exchanged vows and tied their two hearts into one, typhoid struck the better of him, gripping his existence to death, in haste, shattering the queen to pieces and leaving her wearing mourning gown until her own passing. That gloomy December day was the coldest and bitterest in Victoria’s life. No other death that befell her family was more painful than the unbearable grief that struck her upon Dear Bertie’s passing.
|Princess Helena and Prince Christian|
Shortly after the wedding, the couple settled at Cumberland Lodge, the traditional residence of the Ranger of Windsor Great Park, an honorary position that the queen bestowed upon Christian. In 1867, their first child was born. They named him Christian Victor. Albert followed in 1869. Their two daughters followed: Helena Victoria, in 1870; and Marie Louise in 1872.
|Princess Helena Victoria (seated) and Princess Marie Louise (girl standing) with their two brothers.|
I find Helena Victoria and Marie Louise the most interesting and colorful figures among Princess Helena’s children. Helena Victoria, who would remain unmarried throughout her life, was a loyal companion to her mother and secretary to Queen Victoria. Marie Louise, meanwhile, endured a tough marital storm that caused her to return to England where she spent the remainder of her life.