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  • Writer's pictureVictoria Regina

Queen Victoria’s Journal - Investiture of the Order of the Bath, 7 July 1855

On 7th July 1855, an investiture ceremony of The Order of The Bath was held in the Throne room of Buckingham Palace. Queen Victoria invested mostly Officers with the exception of a few, many were gravely wounded or suffering from what we now know as PTSD. Notably General Butler who was among the veterans to receive their investiture greatly struggled and continued to arise various times throughout the ceremony leading to him being made to kneel over and over again.


The Queen gave most recipients a Companion Cross with the exception of a few other grades of the order. Prince Albert fastened each star on the men’s uniform which formerly used only to be given into the person’s hands.


Investiture of the Order of the Bath, 7 July 1855 © Royal Collection Trust / HM King Charles III

Queen Victoria’s Journal:

“Rather chilly, when we walked out. — Mama came to luncheon. — Dressed afterwards in my Robes of the Bath & held an investiture. With the exception of a very few, all were Officers having distinguished themselves in the Crimea & for that reason I gave the Companion Crosses, (generally never done) as well as the other grades of the order. George was the 2nd to receive it. Gen: Buller, just returned & still very ill, was so nervous that he got up at least 4 times & had to be made to kneel down again & again. Poor Sir Thomas Troubridge appeared in a new uniform, with artificial feet, & insisting on wheeling himself in a small chair. I got up to put on the Cross, which is suspended from a ribbon. Albert, as Gd Master, fastened each star on, which formerly used only to be given into the person's hands. We afterwards saw Lord Palmerston, relative to the assemblage of people in Hyde Park, these last 2 Sundays, in connection with the Restriction Bill of Ld Robert Grosvenor's which has been finally dropped. The people were quiet enough the Sunday before last, merely hissing a little & calling out to those in carriages "go to Church". But last Sunday they were rather more riotous, & there was scuffling with the Police. More mischief was threatened for tomorrow. This wanton excitement caused by sanctimonious hypocrites. "Saints", when the people were so peaceful & contented, is really too bad. They should legislate for themselves & leave the poor people alone, who work all the week round & who require innocent recreation on a Sunday! That system of making a fast day of this day in England, has risen to such a pitch, that people will stand it no longer, — & I trust these foolish, people will yield to reason, from fright. They intend to have "the Sabbath" more strictly observed, the result being that it is "profaned" by riotous proceedings & that the poor Police are harder worked on that day than all the week! — Then, we saw Ld Hardinge about the necessity of Brigadiers being made forthwith, & he talked about what he thought could be done. — At 6 we started for the Crystal Palace, with Uncle Leopold, his Children, Vicky the Dss of Atholl, la Csse Ive de Bavay (Charlotte's very nice, unmarried, lady,) Uncle's 2 Gentlemen, the Equerries, & Col: Biddulph. When we 1rst arrived we found a great number of people there. We went on to the balcony to see the Fountains play, then walked about the gardens, till 8, when we dined in the same room in which we had lunched with the Emperor. Mama & Ly Anna Maria had joined us. The Crystal Palace Band, — a very good one, played during dinner. Afterwards we walked about in the Palace, which, in the twilight had quite spectoral effect. The orange trees, covered with blossom, perfumed the air deliciously. A new room in the Alhambra was lit up, which had a very fine effect, showing up all the beautiful details. We returned by 11, in open carriages & the effect of the streets all lit up, with many people buying their provisions, was very pretty & gay. It was the coolest night we had had for 10 days. — A telegram came from Gen: Simpson to say that the Cholera was on the decrease, & that the siege operations were progressing satisfactorily.”


Citation:


RA VIC/MAIN/QVJ (W) 7th July 1855 (LORD ESHER'S TYPESCRIPTS) retrieved 7th July 2024



© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2012

© Bodleian Libraries

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