(Above source: YouTube video)
Prince Albert: A Victorian Hero Revealed, a one-hour documentary about Queen Victoria’s husband and soulmate, debuts this Sunday, June 14, at 8 pm ET on PBS stations (check local listings for exact day/time in your area).
Prince Albert is perhaps best known to Americans for his premature death and the pall it cast over the remaining 40 years of the widowed Queen’s life. Victorian Hero, which sources Albert’s papers and family photographs, seeks to add dimension to that tragic portrait, one that shows a prince consort actively engaged in what were, for the times, progressive causes.
Albert was born in 1819 in Coburg and was almost immediately betrothed to his cousin Victoria, three months his elder. Although an arranged marriage, when the two finally met it was love at first sight. Initially, the British public and political establishment were not so enamored, greeting the German Albert with skepticism and even hostility. Eventually, he gained recognition for his advocacy of educational and worker reforms, as well as reining in the royal household’s profligate spending. One of his grandest visions, The Great Exhibition in 1851, was the world’s first trade fair. It featured a vast glass palace housing more than 100,000 exhibits and drew six million visitors.
The Prince was also famously a family man, an actively engaged father of nine children.
When he died in December 1861 at age 42, The Observer wrote: “England will not soon look upon his like again.”
“I don’t think people do him justice because they don’t really understand what he did for us,” said Daisy Goodwin, creator, writer and executive producer of the PBS Masterpiece series Victoria. “He was one of the great kings we never had.”
Speaking of Victoria, the drama starring Jenna Coleman and Tom Hughes as the royal couple, there is still no word about a season four. You can, however, watch the first three seasons (25 episodes) with an Amazon Prime subscription; or buy individual episodes for $1.99 from Amazon, Vudu and other providers.
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