mr windsor

After Albert - Queen Victoria’s Second Love, John Brown

The idea that Queen Victoria was absolutely inconsolable and locked away in seclusion for the rest of her life after Prince Albert’s death is a myth. It is true the Queen took residence immediately after Albert’s death in her more rural homes of Windsor, Balmoral and Osborne, and refused to appear in public for some years. Concern for her health rose, and in 1864, 3 years after the death of Prince Albert, that it was suggested that the Queens outside attendant at Balmoral, John Brown, be sent to Osborne House encourage the Queen to ride out on her pony. He arrived in December that same year, and some time after his arrival Victoria made his position permanent, presenting him the title of ‘ The Queen’s Highland Servant’.

John Brown was born in 1826, in Crathienaird, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, his father being a tenant farmer. He first came into the queens service in 1848 as a Balmoral gillie to Prince Albert, and within the next 10 years he had become her regular outside attendant, leading her pony out on the highlands and helping the royal party with their needs out on the moors, from lacing Victoria’s tea with whisky to cooking potatoes.

Although Victoria held much affection for her brash highlander, others found him rude and much jealousy surrounded him due to his relationship with the Queen; the Lord Chamberlin called him a ‘Course animal’.

John would address Victoria as ‘wumman’, whilst Victoria looked past her Highlander’s faults, saying that his independence on whisky made him ‘bashful’. Her relative seclusion and easy relationship with John led to much rumour in the 1870s to their relationship, from a secret marriage to a secret child. The name  Mrs Brown was on everyone’s lips. However, the Foreign Secretary himself, the Earl of Derby did record that Victoria and John slept in adjoining rooms, contrary to etiquette and even decency’. Biographer A N Wilson claims they slept together in the same bed but never consummated their relationship. Controversially, Victoria also used John for séances where they, with close courtiers, would attempt to contact the spirit of Prince Albert. These séances would go on in absolute secrecy in small closets, such as the Blue Drawing Room at Windsor Castle (where Prince Albert died) and the Horn Room at Osborne House.

Despite the rumours they faced, Victoria remained unmoving on any removal of John Brown from her side, whilst he continued his loyal and faithful service. On at least one occasion he disarmed an attacker to the Queen (in 1872) and Victoria relied on him more and more, writing -

‘I feel I have here always in the House a good, devoted soul… whose only object and interest is in my service, & God knows how much I want to be taken care of.’

For all their closeness and love, be romantic or otherwise, for one another, a life-long relationship was again not to be for Victoria. In March 1883 he caught a chill but refused to go to bed, continuing his devoted service to Victoria. Thus, on the 27th that same month, John Brown died, age 56, at Windsor Castle. Once again, Victoria found herself devastated at the death of the man she loved. She wrote -

‘It is not only the loss of a servant but of a real friend.’

Whilst her private secretary Sir Henry Ponsonby wrote of Brown -

‘He was the only person who could fight and make the Queen do what she did not wish. He did not always succeed, nor was his advice always the best. But I believe he was honest, and with all his want of education, his roughness, his prejudices and his other faults, he was undoubtedly a most excellent servant to her.’

After John’s death, Victoria commissioned a life-sized statue of her Highland servant, and had it placed in the grounds of Balmoral. She remembered her faithful John until her death in 1901, leaving strict instructions that shy must be buried, among much else, with a lock of his hair, a photograph of him, and wearing a ring given to her by John, that had belonged to his mother.

Although this request had been carried out, upon her death her son the new King Edward VII destroyed much material written by Victoria about Brown, busts and photographs of him, in addition moving Victoria’s statue of John to a less conspicuous site in Balmorals grounds where it remains today. Not only did Edward destroy as much evidence of Brown’s relationship with his mother as possible, Victoria had left her many diaries to her youngest daughter Beatrice to transcribe and edit for publication. This, of course, means much on John Brown, especially if explicit or inappropriate, would have been edited and the originals all burnt.

It seems we will never know the extent of Victoria and John Brown’s relationship, but from what we can piece together Victoria took much comfort, reliance and friendship from John, whilst he was a most loyal and honest servant to her. 

Sources - English Heritage, A N Wilson

See You Tomorrow Night

TITLE OF STORY: See You Tomorrow Night

CHAPTER NUMBER/TITLE/ONE SHOT: One Shot

AUTHOR: delusionsofnostalgia

WHICH TOM/CHARACTER: Actor Tom

GENRE: Angst, Drama, 

FIC SUMMARY: You and Tom have been in a committed relationship for years now. He’s returned to London from filming but you realise he hasn’t been quite the same with you. A co-worker stumbles across an article, with pretty convincing photos, that Tom has been cheating on you and you confront him, hoping that it isn’t true. What will he say? (Tom x Reader)

RATING: T

AUTHORS NOTES: Hey guys, this is a little angsty, heart breaking kinda piece. I just got inspired and had to write it. It could be more than a one shot depending on feedback but I think it’s good as a stand alone. Hope you guys enjoy it! Feedback and comments always welcome! :) xx

See you tomorrow night love. xx

You sighed, pulling, in a terribly self-aware manner, at the hem of your dress. It was his favourite dress on you; oxblood, tight, with a zipper all the way down the back for easy removal. You fidget remembering the first time he had slipped a hand around your waist when you had worn this dress, his long, elegant fingers digging softly into the fleshy area of your hip; an area you had once been very conscious of.  You hadn’t seen him in months, he had come home for the occasional visit but never stayed more than three nights and god you had missed him. He was as dedicated to his work as ever but this time you had missed him more than usual, accepting that his career was skyrocketing and he just couldn’t skype as much due to pure exhaustion.

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The best friend and cousin of the Queen, Margaret Rhodes has died aged 91, Buckingham Palace confirmed today.

Mrs Rhodes passed away on Friday night following a short illness. It is believed that the Queen had visited her regularly over the past few weeks.

Buckingham Palace has said it will not be issuing a statement because it is a private matter, although the Queen has sent her condolences to the family.

An insider told the Sunday Express: “The Queen will be devastated to have lost her best friend. She grew up with Mrs Rhodes and they had so much shared history. They remained close throughout the Queen’s reign and Her Majesty continued to be a regular visitor at Mrs Rhodes’s Windsor home until very recently.”

“One of the disadvantages of the Queen having such a long life is that she has had to say goodbye to so many dear friends and relatives.”

“It is such a sad loss for Her Majesty, Mrs Rhodes’s family and everyone in the royal household. She was an extraordinary woman.”

Born Margaret Elphinstone, Mrs Rhodes was the youngest daughter of Sidney Elphinstone, the 16th Lord Elphinstone and his wife Lady Mary Bowes-Lyon - sister to the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

The Queen and Mrs Rhodes have been close friends since childhood and were only 10 months apart in age. They spent regular holidays together growing up and during the Second World War Mrs Rhodes lived alongside the Royal Family at Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, when she studied at secretarial school and then worked as a secretary for MI6.

In 1947 Mrs Rhodes was one of eight bridesmaids at the future Queen’s wedding to Lt Philip Mountbatten, now the Duke of Edinburgh.

She married the writer Denys Gravenor Rhodes in 1950, with Princess Margaret as one of the bridesmaids. The couple brought up two sons and two daughters in Devon.

When Mr Rhodes was diagnosed with cancer, the Queen offered the couple the Garden House in Windsor Great Park so they could be closer to London for treatment. Mr Rhodes died in 1981 and his widow remained there.

The cousins remained so close that they would take tea together every Sunday after church when the Queen was in Windsor.

In 1991, Mrs Rhodes became Woman of the Bedchamber, a mixture of lady-in-waiting and companion, to her aunt, the Queen Mother, until her death in 2002. That year the Queen appointed Mrs Rhodes Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO).

In her 2011 autobiography, The Final Curtsey, she described how as teenagers she and her royal cousins slipped out of Buckingham Palace on May 8, 1945, and celebrated VE Day with the crowds in The Mall, inspiring the 2015 film A Royal Night Out.

She also revealed how the future Queen did the conga through the palace and sang until 2am on VJ Day.

In celebration of my 6 year anniversary of my royal blog (and many royal things have happened in that time!) I have done some shoutouts to other royal (some non royal) blogs just to say thanks for being there and if you would like to get to know me better just send me a message, i don’t bite!😉
👑A-B:
@acrowningglory @ahappyroyalist, @ajlovesgreenday, @alexanderavsverige, @alexandthebrf, @allaboutroyalty, @allthelovelyroyals, @alltheprettyroyals, @allthingscatherine, @allthingspiercings, @allthingswindsor, @amazing-royal-women, @anythingandeverythingroyals, @arianewilhelminas, @aroyalargentinian @aroyalbromance, @babygeorgedespisesyou, @being-a-royal, @bernadottewindsor, @bernadotteroyals, @borbonsisters, @bornafterbetrayal-phff, @brfmemes, @british-royals, @britishswedishroyals
👑C-D:
@ccatalina15, @cambridgedom, @cambridgefour, @cambridgeprincess, @cambridges-borbon-royals, @cambridges4, @camillasgirl, @catharinasamalia, @catherinemiddletonmafia, @charlotteofcambrdge, @claireofluxembourg, @classicallyroyal, @classicroyalrarepics, @colormecambridge, @countessdelannoy, @countessofclothes, @countessofstrathearn, @cpmary, @crown-princess-mary, @crownprincessmary, @crownofcambridge, @crownprincesscouple, @crownprincessalma, @crownsroyalty, @dailymadeleine, @danish-royal-family, @dear-george, @duchess-catherine-elizabeth, @duchesskatexxx, @duchessofostergotlands, @duchessofcambridges, @dutchqueen, @dutchroyalfamily
👑E-F:
@earlandcountessofwessex, @earpiercingsholic, @embeth1506, @estelledaily, @estelleleonore, @estelleprincess, @european-monarchies, @europesroyals, @everythingroyalty, @felipeandletizia, @filipe-leticia, @flawlesscatherine, @flawlessflorence, @forgetmenotinswedish @fuckyeahtattoos
👑G-H:
@gabriellademonaco, @georgealexanderlouisofcambridge, @georgesfamily, @georgeslays, @ginger-ninjas, @grandroyalpalace, @harryandthecambridges, @harrywales, @hashemitcourt, @heavyarethecrowns, @henry-wales, @highqueenof, @hrhtheduchessofclarence, @house-of-bernadotte, @hrhbekarie, @hrhwindsor, @hrhprincessbeatriceblog
👑I-J:
@i-pledge-you-royal, @iconic-queen, @ifreakingloveroyals, @iheartearpiercings-blog, @iheartroyals, @iheartwindsors, @ilovegeorgecambridge, @ilovethebritishroyals, @ilove-piercings-and-tattoos, @ilovethebritishroyals, @ilovethemonarchy, @johnabradley, @jordanianroyals, @josephinesophias
👑K-L:
@kate-charlotte-william-george, @kate-duchessofcambridge, @kateandwilllove, @katecambridges, @katemiddletons, @keepingupwiththeroyals, @keepcalmandduchesson, @keeproyal, @kingdomofcambridge, @kongefamilien, @koninginmaxima, @koninklijkhuis, @koningspaar, @kronprinsessa, @kronprinsenfrederik, @kronprinsessanvictoria, @kronprinsessens
👑L-M:
@leroyalrealm, @letiziadeborbon, @letters-royale, @littleworldofroyalty, @lovehenrywales, @loveprincessmary, @lovetheroyals, @lovingtheroyals, @maddeoneills, @madeleinethereseameliejosephine, @marieofdenmark, @marydonldson, @mathildemarieghislaine, @maxieroyal, @mexicanroyalist, @middletonhellqvist, @middletonroyalty, @monaco-princely-family, @mountbatten-windsor, @mr-mrswales, @muchadoaboutroyals, @myfavoriteroyals, @myroyalsflawless
👑N-O:
@norskekongefamilien, @norwaysprincess, @norwayroyal, @ofprincessesandqueens, @officiallywhat, @ohmymettemarit, @oneillsofsweden, @onemoreblogaboutroyals, @oscarcarlolof
👑P-Q:
@passionatelyroyal, @phfanfic-againstheodds, @philipdukeofedinburgh, @pintsizedprincesses, @pprincessofwaless, @princeandprincessofcambridge, @princegeorgealexanderlouis, @princegeorgeofcambridge, @princeofspain200, @princessalexiaa, @princesaestelle, @princess-ingrid-alexandra, @princesswheresyourcrown, @princess-madde, @princess-sofias, @princessestelles, @princessjosiephine, @princessleonors, @princessphines, @princesscharlottes, @queenmaximas, @queen-mathilde, @queenestelleofsassden, @queenletiziaofspain, @queenmargrethe, @queensofias
👑R-S:
@r0yaltyfav, @randomactsofroyals, @ravishingtheroyals, @ready4royalty, @realityofroyals, @regally-royal, @regallyswedish, @reinaleonors, @rightroyallyobsessed, @roseandroyals, @royalsgonewild, @royals-elegance, @royal-windsor, @royalbabies, @royalcentral, @royalfandomunity, @royalhistoria, @royalista, @royalwatcher, @royallysouthernsportsloving, @royalposts, @royaltyspeaking, @sarahbellar, @sassycambridges, @scandinavian-royalty, @smrletiziaofspain, @smcganns, @sofiaandcarl, @sofiahellqvist, @spanish-royals, @stellaofsverige, @swedish-princesses, @swedishmonarchy, @swedishroyalhousemafia, @swedishroyalist
👑T-U:
@tangomandarina, @teaandroyalty, @teamphilipftw, @thatgingermuppet, @the-crown-of-sweden, @the-blue-blooded, @the-royalfamilies, @the-lovely-estelle-and-oscar, @the-royally-obsessed, @the3princesses, @thebritishmonarchy-, @thepompandthepagentry, @theswedes, @theregalkingdom, @theroyalsandi, @thesebernadottes, @turnadette, @ultravi0lent-horrorsh0w, @universallyroyals
👑V-W:
@verymuchkate, @vic-of-sverige, @vintage-royalty, @vivaroyalty, @walesaffairs, @we-heart-piercing, @whynotbritish, @willandkatedaily, @willemalexander, @willkateroyals, @wills-and-kate, @windsors, @windsored, @wombat-and-squeak, @wonderfullyroyal, @worldofwindsor, @willsandkateofcambridge, @williamcatherinegeorgecharlotte
👑X-Y-Z:
@xlilibetandphilip, @yetanotherroyalblog, @york-sisters, @yoursweetremedy


❤️💛💚💙💜

I mean in England we have a Queen for fuck’s sake. A Queen! We have to call her things like “Your Majesty” YOUR MAJESTY! Like she’s all majestic, like an eagle or a mountain. She’s just a person. A little old lady in a shiny hat – that we paid for. Or “Your Highness”! What the fuck is that?! What, she’s high up, above us, at the top of a class pyramid on a shelf of money with her own face on it. We should be calling her Mrs Windsor. In fact, that’s not even her real name, they changed it in the war to distract us from the inconvenient fact that they were as German as the enemy that teenage boys were being encouraged, conscripted actually, to die fighting. Her actual name is Mrs Saxe-Coburg-Gotha
—  Russell Brand

On December 12, 1936, at the Privy Council meeting, George VI announced that he wanted to make his brother “His Royal Highness The Duke of Windsor.” He wanted it to be the first act of his reign even though official documents were not signed until March 8 of the following year. During the interim, Edward was universally known as the Duke of Windsor. George VI’s decision to turn Edward into a duke meant he could not stand for election to the House of Commons or talk about politics in the House of Lords.

The letter patent dated May 27, 1937, which re-conferred upon him the title of Duke of Windsor, specifically stated that “his wife and his descendants, if there are any, can not bear this title or these attributes.” Some British ministers pointed out that Edward had no need for this letter because he had not lost his rank and others considered that as he had abdicated, he had lost all his royal titles and had to be simply called “Mr. Edward Windsor ”.

On April 14, 1937, the Attorney General for England and Wales Sir Donald Somervell submitted to Secretary of State for the Interior John Allsebrook Simon a memorandum summarizing the views of Lord Advocate Thomas Cooper, Parliamentary Counsel Sir Granville Ram and himself:

“We tend to think that after his abdication, the Duke of Windsor has no right to claim the right to describe himself as Royal Highness. In other words, no reasonable objection could have been taken if the king had decided that his exclusion from the line of succession excluded him from the right in this capacity as conferred by the letter patent. ”
“The question must, however, be considered on the ground that, for reasons which are not easy to understand, it enjoys, with the express approval of His Majesty, this title and was called the Royal Highness on a formal occasion and in the official documents. In the light of the case law, it seems clear that the wife of a Royal Highness has the same title, unless a decision is taken to deprive him of it. ”
“We have come to the conclusion that the wife can not claim this right on legal grounds. We consider that the right to use this title is in Her Majesty’s prerogatives and has the power to regulate it by letters patent under general or particular circumstances.

Great…thank you

Counsel | Ella and Trixie

@trixie-windsor

Gabriella had of course seen the headlines and she understood completely why Trixie was upset. Since she had seen the first headline, Ella had started looking into Invasion of Privacy laws. Sitting at her desk, she had texted Trixie to let her know she had a free slot if she needed it. It  was a difficult situation since Trixie’s family was such a public high profile family. “Martha, if Mrs Windsor arrives, please send her straight through.” she buzzed through to the office assistant. “And for goodness sake, don’t embarrass the company.” The reply of Yes Miss Martinez, sounded and Ella went back to work.

Crossing Knives, Chapter 2: Gourmet Appetizers and Al Fresco Dining

Here we go again! I know I said I’d try writing shorter chapters and updating more often… but my brain disagreed with that idea, so this chapter is 4000 words long and a couple of weeks late. Oh well…

There are several new characters on this chapter, so later today I’ll do another post with some photo collages and face claims. Just so you know what everybody looks like. I promise less introduction and more action in chapter 3!

Credit note: the tattoos that adorn Tom’s skin in the story, including his trademark knife and fork, belong in real life to Chef Michael Voltaggio. Every time you see a tattooed arm in one of my images, it’s really MV.

Very special thanks to my lovely beta theothercourse. You’re the best.

All kinds of feedback and comments are welcome, positive and negative. Thank you for reading!

Chapter 2: Gourmet Appetizers and Al Fresco Dining    

It was the end of a busy evening at the small but modern kitchen of Band of Brothers. Dinner service was almost over, which meant that the busiest person in the building was Connor, the pastry chef. He assembled with exquisite care the last three desserts of the night, with the assistance of one of the cooks. A moment later, two sets of pistachio financiers and one delicious looking butterscotch pudding were ready to go, and the young man made a sign for the servers to take away the plates.

“You really outdid yourself today, my boy. They look so pretty that the eaters are going to be too gobsmacked to eat them!” said Birdie, the woman who had been helping him with the dessert course. After more than thirty years working as a line cook in several restaurants, she was an expert at her job, despite never having set foot in a culinary school. Her permanent smile and cheerful voice, in her trademark Eastern European accent, had helped her become the most beloved member of the restaurant’s staff. Not even Chef Tom on his bad days (of which he had been having quite a lot lately) dared to utter a bad word when Birdie was in the kitchen.

“Birdie, love, you’ve helped me with these a hundred times… I’m sure I could leave any moment and you’d be able to make all the desserts without any help”, answered Connor, undoing the collar of his chef coat with a tired smile. “But I’m glad we’re finished. Tom has been especially grouchy today, I’ll be glad to leave before he gets out of Luke’s office. I wonder what are they talking about… I swear I heard them shouting at each other a minute ago.”

“Not grouchy, my boy… hungover. I bet that chap has been partying again, and Mr. Windsor is telling him off.” Birdie sighed, with her eyes fixed on her boss’s office door. “I wonder how he can cook like that after getting pissed every night.”

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Maybe we have a few months of food left, who knows how long we’re gonna be out here? I mean I went through the jungle, heard a scream, came back so I don’t know if there are any coconuts out there. Or, maybe by some miracle Erik’s alive and he’s looking for us. Or Mr. Windsor? I mean, it’s just hot and the AC isn’t working. I’ve accepted death.