Born two months premature on 8th January 1864 at Frogmore House, Prince Albert Victor entered the world weighing less than four pounds. As the eldest child and first son of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, and his wife Alexandra, Prince Albert Victor was automatically second in line to the British throne. In her journal, Queen Victoria wrote of how relieved she was that the two were safe but dwelled on Prince Albert not being present for the important event-
'Rather less cold. — Walking & driving in the small pony carriage with Lenchen. Quite strange to see the ice on the shore close down to the sea & in King's Quay Creek. — Received another imprudent Draft of Ld Russell's in which he, contrary to the knowledge of the Cabinet, seems to have threatened that we should support Denmark, should Schleswig be invaded! Saw Sir C. Phipps, who was somewhat concerned & alarmed about it, & a Drift has been prepared accordingly. — After luncheon wrote the Draft, & then walked a little with Katherine B. — Telegram from Berlin, — very cardiac. No positive answer can be given as to what the terns would be, required by Prussia. — Saw Dr Holzmann. — The Biddulphs & Louise Bowater dined with us. — Was dreadfully started, during dinner at hearing from Bertie by telegraph that "nothing was certain, but they had thought it prudent to send for Dr Farre". Was alarmed & could not think what had happened, whether there had been some accident or not. At 11 arrived the surprising telegram "dear Alix was delivered at 10 m. to 9 of a fine boy, both are doing as well as possible, her pulse is excellent." We were dumbfounded. Thank God! That she is safe, but the alarm was great. I know they can have had nothing of any kind ready for her or the child & no nurse &c. Heard, later in answer to a question of mine, that no one had been there, but Mr Brown!! Settled to go at once to Windsor tomorrow. So grieved not to have been there. — Could not sleep for a long time for agitation. Again without my beloved one this very interesting important event, which he had looked forward to with such anxiety, has taken place. I felt so bewildered, & so longing to share my joy over the happy event with him, instead of which I am alone & forlorn. —'
His grandmother, Queen Victoria, who held strong views on the subject of Christian names, decreed that the heir to the throne in the next generation should be named Albert Victor, the baby was accordingly christened in the private chapel of Buckingham Palace on 10th March 1864, with the names Albert Victor Christian Edward, the last two names being chosen by his parents, although he was always to be known as "Eddy" in the family.