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Queen Victoria

1 of 28 portraits on display in Room 21 at the National Portrait Gallery

Queen Victoria, replica by Sir George Hayter, 1863 (1838) - NPG 1250 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Queen Victoria

replica by Sir George Hayter
oil on canvas, 1863 (1838)
112 1/2 in. x 70 1/2 in. (2858 mm x 1790 mm)
Given by Queen Victoria, 1900
Primary Collection
NPG 1250


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Sitterback to top

  • Queen Victoria (1819-1901), Reigned 1837-1901. Sitter associated with 520 portraits, Artist associated with 5 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Sir George Hayter (1792-1871), Portrait and history painter; son of Charles Hayter. Artist associated with 198 portraits, Sitter associated with 16 portraits.

This portraitback to top

Queen Victoria came to the throne at the age of eighteen on the death of her uncle, William IV, in 1837 and was crowned queen on 28 June 1838. She wrote in her journal on the day of her coronation: 'I really cannot say how proud I feel to be the Queen of such a Nation', and some of this idealism is conveyed in Sir George Hayter's coronation portrait. Victoria described a small version of this portrait, which Hayter painted for her private apartments, as 'excessively like and beautifully painted'. This version was given to the National Portrait Gallery by Queen Victoria in 1900 and is an autograph replica of an original of 1838.

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Events of 1838back to top

Current affairs

The Anti-Corn Law league is established in Manchester, led by Richard Cobden and John Bright, aiming to create a fully free-trade economy. The People's Charter is published, demanding many constitutional amendments that would become central to future democratic reform, including universal male suffrage and secret ballots. Despite having one million signatures (and 5 million by 1848), the petition was rejected. Slavery is completely abolished.

Art and science

Turner's The Fighting Temeraire is exhibited at the Royal Academy. The Temeraire, which had broken the line at the Battle of Trafalgar, was a reflection on the rapid changes of the industrial age. This was demonstrated this year when Isambard Brunel's Great Western crosses the Atlantic, in just fifteen days - a ship under sail could take a month. The London-Birmingham railway is also completed, the line engineered by Robert Stephenson.

International

The first stage in the formation of independent Boer republics in South Africa, as the Republic of Natal is formed in South Africa, following the Boers defeat of the Matabele of Mzilikasi. This comes two years after the Dutch-speaking inhabitants of the British-ruled colony of South Africa set out on the Great Trek, in search of their own independent state. The Central American Federation, an experimental republic formed of several Latin states splits.

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