was not influenced by his mother's prejudice and he constantly proved his devotion to the Gladstone family. When Mr. Gladstone was buried in Westminster Abbey, the Prince of Wales was one of the pallbearers and after the coffin had been lowered into the grave he walked across to Mrs. Gladstone, spoke to her for a few minutes, then kissed her hand.
Queen Victoria received the old statesman only once between his retirement and his death. He came to see her for ten minutes, at Cimiez, in 1897. Then he was no longer a menace to her peace of mind and she unbent enough to be what he described as "decidedly kind."
"She gave me her hand,"he wrote,
" ... which had never happened with me during all my life. "15
When Mr. Gladstone died, on May 19, 1898, the Queen turned to one of her ladies, as she was writing a letter of sympathy to Mrs. Gladstone, and said,
"How can I say I am sorry when I am not. "16
IN THE late spring and summer of 1894, Prince George and Princess Mary, Duke and Duchess of York, lived at White Lodge, in Richmond Park. The house had been built by King George I as "a place of refreshment after the fatigues of the chase" and it was still shut off from the growing edge of London, within a garden of rhododendrons and elegant trees. The Prince of Wales had lived at White Lodge with his tutors in the fifties, and it was here that his first grandchild was born, in June, 1894.
When the baby Prince was two days old Queen Victoria travelled over from Windsor to see him. There were great crowds out as the carriage rolled up Richmond Hill, to cheer the old Sovereign who could recall three kings who had ruled before her and who could now contemplate three generations of princes who would become kings, when she died. The Queen went in to see the "fine, strong-looking child" and soon became busy about the choice of his names, and plans for his future. On July 16, she went to Richmond again, for the Prince's christening. "The dear fine baby" was brought in and handed to her. She recalled, in her journal, that the child
"was very good."1 "There was an absence of all music," which she thought "a pity." When the service was over, the Queen went to the Long Gallery, where, in