CHAPTER II

MEANTIME the new King had been much occupied in those domestic measures his conduct of which caused him to be almost as unpopular as his brother Cumberland. He had been extremely ill at the time of his accession but a drastic bloodletting (150 ounces, so Henry Brougham told Mr. Creevey) did him all the good in the world. His first business was the matter of his divorce from his wife, Queen Caroline. The Duke of Kent in his speculations about the succession had thought that he would be deterred by the unpopularity such an attempt would earn him, but he underrated George's crass vindictiveness. The Queen was abroad at the time of his accession, and the offer of £50,000 a year was made her if she would promise never to return to England, but this she refused, and prepared for her journey. She knew that evidence had been collected to prove, or infer, her adultery with an Italian servant of hers called Bergami, but, whether conscious of her innocence or confident in the popular outcry which proceedings against her would evoke, she landed at Dover on June 5th, 1820, and was received with Royal honours at the port, and enthusiastic sympathy and general illuminations welcomed her arrival in London. The King at once sent to his Houses of Parliament documents setting forth his reasons for divorcing her, and he gave special instructions that mention of "our most gracious Queen Caroline" should be omitted from the prayer for the Royal Family. This

-15-

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Queen Victoria
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • List of Illustrations *
  • Note *
  • Chapter I 1
  • Chapter II 15
  • Chapter III 32
  • Chapter IV 49
  • Chapter V 66
  • Chapter VI 74
  • Chapter VII 97
  • Chapter VIII 117
  • Chapter IX 142
  • Chapter X 158
  • Chapter XI 168
  • Chapter XII 186
  • Chapter XIII 203
  • Chapter XIV 218
  • Chapter XV 239
  • Chapter XVI 263
  • Chapter XVII 277
  • Chapter XVIII 306
  • Chapter XIX 335
  • Chapter XX 357
  • Chapter XXI 383
  • Index 399
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