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Queen Victoria married Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha at the Chapel Royal, St. James’s Palace, on Monday, 10 February 1840.


Victoria proposed to Albert during his visit in October 1839 and was thankfully accepted. As a queen, Victoria outranked her prospective groom so she was the one who had to propose.

The engagement was duly announced and the couple were inseparable until Albert had to return to Coburg. While the country was pleased their young queen had found love, Albert was a low-ranked prince from an impoverished family and many thought he was not good enough for her.


The ceremony took place on the afternoon of 10 February 1840 in the Chapel Royal, St. James’s Palace, which was unusual as royal marriages traditionally took place in the evening.

The ceremony was conducted by William Howley, the Archbishop of Canterbury and Victoria chose to obey her husband when they exchanged vows.


Royal wedding dresses were generally made of luxurious and colourful fabrics but Victoria decided she would wear white and her choice would revolutionise the wedding industry.

The heavy cream silk was made from fabric woven in Spitalfields, while the hand-made lace was designed specially for Victoria in the village of Beer, about 10 miles from Honiton.


The bridesmaids wore white off the shoulder gowns, designed by Queen Victoria, which had sprays of roses on the bodice and skirt. Each bridesmaid was presented with a turquoise brooch, designed by Prince Albert, in the form of a spread eagle, with ruby eyes, and a diamond beak, holding a pearl in each claw.

When the wedding was being organised, Prince Albert had declared the twelve young ladies chosen had to be of impeccable character, however they were chosen according to rank.


The main wedding cake, made by Mr. John Mauditt, Queen Victoria’s confectioner, weighed 300 pounds and was topped with Britannia blessing the bride and bridegroom. At the feet of the groom lay the figure of a dog to denote fidelity, while the bride was depicted with a pair of turtle doves, denoting the felicities of the marriage state, at her feet. A cupid was shown writing the date of the marriage in a volume on his knees, while other cupids held British royal symbols.

The cake was also adorned with bouquets of myrtle tied with true lovers’ knots which were given to the guests at the wedding breakfast.


After the wedding breakfast, the newlyweds went to Windsor Castle for a three-day honeymoon. Prince Albert had requested a longer honeymoon but Victoria vetoed the idea since she did not want to be away from state business for so long.

On the evening of the honeymoon, Victoria had to rest due to a sickening headache but she wrote in her diary about how attentive Albert was to her and she obviously recovered quickly enough as they seemed to have enjoyed a blissful wedding night.