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Memorialising Albert

Queen Victoria was distraught at Prince Albert’s unexpected death of typhoid fever, at the age of just 42, in December 1861. While she continued to have some interest in the arts, much of her patronage focused on perpetuating Albert’s memory, publicly and privately – through the design and decoration of the mausoleum in which he was interred, for example, and the erection of statues and monuments to the Prince across the country and abroad.

The sequence of very personal watercolour albums were ended, ‘for ever’, with scenes of the last year of Albert’s life. During her widowhood, Victoria enjoyed being surrounded by objects and mementos of emotional significance from her marriage. Leafing through the pages of colourful watercolours depicting happy times of the past, the Queen kept her beloved husband’s image and memory alive.