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  • Writer's pictureVictoria Regina

Queen Victoria’s Journal - John Francis’s assassination attempt


To Her Most Gracious Majesty Queen Victoria on the Vile Atrocious attempt upon Her Life on May 30th 1842 published 1 Jun 1842  Fourteen lines of verse by James Ward, dedicated to the Queen after the attempt on her life in 1842. Printed in gold on dark blue paper, with decorative gold border.  Awake my pen, no Poet's pen can sleep, While this sad horror makes our Country weep. Cruel Traitor; that could our Sovreign bleed, Or stain our Country with attempted deed; To rob old Albion, of her boasted pride, While better Monarch never did preside, Is nothing more than hasty maniac strife. He's not a Man * who'd take a Lady's life. These frequent interventions must convince, How wise the councils of God's providence; Thus may our blest Queen all dangers overcome, And joyful may she reign, while days shall run, To God alone we do all Vict'ries give, And long, long may our happy Monarch live.  This tragical occurrence is most revolting to the feelings of man, especially when contrasted with one, who is the glory of her nation and also the admiration of the world.  Humbly dedicated to Her most Gracious Majesty, (In prayerful feelings of gratitude to Almighty God,) By Her Majesty's most Loyal and ever dutiful suljeet, Manchester, June Ist, 1842. JAMES WARD.
To Her Most Gracious Majesty Queen Victoria on the Vile Atrocious attempt upon Her Life on May 30th 1842 published 1 Jun 1842 Fourteen lines of verse by James Ward, dedicated to the Queen after the attempt on her life in 1842. Printed in gold on dark blue paper, with decorative gold border. Awake my pen, no Poet's pen can sleep, While this sad horror makes our Country weep. Cruel Traitor; that could our Sovreign bleed, Or stain our Country with attempted deed; To rob old Albion, of her boasted pride, While better Monarch never did preside, Is nothing more than hasty maniac strife. He's not a Man * who'd take a Lady's life. These frequent interventions must convince, How wise the councils of God's providence; Thus may our blest Queen all dangers overcome, And joyful may she reign, while days shall run, To God alone we do all Vict'ries give, And long, long may our happy Monarch live. This tragical occurrence is most revolting to the feelings of man, especially when contrasted with one, who is the glory of her nation and also the admiration of the world. Humbly dedicated to Her most Gracious Majesty, (In prayerful feelings of gratitude to Almighty God,) By Her Majesty's most Loyal and ever dutiful subject, Manchester, June Ist, 1842. JAMES WARD.

"We breakfasted at 9 & walked out afterwards. It was very fine. — Wrote letters & read. — Albert sat to Landseer, & I came in, after having been to the Nursery. Mrs Sly has come & Mrs Roberts has left. — Mama joined us at luncheon. — Albert went to give the decision, as Ld Warden, to the Appeal he heard, the other day. — I sat to Landseer, & at ½ p. 4, when he had returned, we drove out, the 2 Equerries riding quite close up to the carriage on either side, — the reason for which will appear. We drove up to Hampstead Heath, from whence the view was beautiful, & back the same way. When we drove down Constitution Hill, we heard the report of a pistol, — but very slight, & saw the man seized, which was very satisfactory & we felt greatly relieved. We felt so full of gratitude to that Almighty Providence, Who has again so wonderfully & mercifully preserved us!


As soon as I came home I ran & told Lehzen about what had occurred, & she was naturally thunderstruck! Then came dear Mama & Uncle Mensdorff, who were horrified, as also our good Cousins, who ran up from downstairs, & I shall never forget good Arthur's look of consternation, — he went as pale as a sheet. We all remained in Albert's Waiting Room which looks into the Court, I only going away for a moment to see Uncle Cambridge, who came to require. Uncle Mensdorff was so kind, & they all said it was very brave of me to have gone out, knowing, as we did, for certain, since the morning that this man was about. I felt quick agitated & excited. Before dinner, we heard that the man was about 20 years old, of the name of Francis, the son of a machine maker at Covent Garden Theatre, & himself, a cabinet maker. — George Cambridge, Mama, & her Lady, The Dss of Buccleuch, Ld & Ly Exeter, Ld & Ly Robert Grosvenor, & Ly Peel dined. Sat between George, & good Uncle Mensdorff. Everyone was most kind & horrified at this dreadful attempt. After dinner the Ministers came, & they told us that the man had been remanded till the next day. A boy, whose name is Pearson, saw the man take aim & is an excellent witness, but stammers dreadfully. The wretch, Sir Robert Peel, & all the Ministers declare, is as sane as anyone can be, but very cunning, trying to say that he might have fired in play. He is said to be good-looking, with not at all a bad countenance. — When I think of what might have happened, I shudder!"


RA VIC/MAIN/QVJ (W) 30 May 1842 (Princess Beatrice's copies) retrieved 24th May 2024


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