Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Antique Image of the Day: Peasants of Coburg, 1857

Coburg Peasants at the Rosenau
Francis Bedford, 1857
The Royal Collection
Prince Albert left behind his native country when he married Queen Victoria. His love for Victoria outweighed everything else, however, he did miss Coburg and spoke of it often. Albert and Victoria traveled to Coburg together in 1845, and the Prince delighted in showing his bride all the sights that he so adored.

For Prince Albert’s birthday in 1857, the Queen commissioned photographer Francis Bedford to produce images of Coburg that the Prince could display in his suite of rooms at the Palace. Amongst those images were photographs of peasants from Coburg. These were some of the pictures that the Prince most cherished. The people who sat for the photographs were so honored to do so that they refused any sort of payment for their time. Queen Victoria rewarded them with gifts—sending silk kerchiefs to the women and embroidered waistcoats to the men. 

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