As the procession receded into the distance across the shimmering silver of the sea, the sun, sinking to the horizon, broke into a still greater blaze of glory.
Far, far off, the pall upon the Royal coffin was still distinguishable, for the little Alberta as she passed between the towering battleships was still in the track of the sun. Above her the moon, almost full, showed faintly in the sky; and the air trembled with the notes of a funeral march, rising from some ship in the far distance.
By the end of 1900, Queen Victoria's health had notoriously declined. She was almost blind and was too weak. By mid-January the end was imminent. On January 22nd most of the Queen's family had gathered at her bedside at Osborne House. Her eldest grandchild, Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany had taken possession of the situation by occupying the most important place at his grandmother's side, putting his arm around her neck. Alix was kneeling at the bedside taking the Queen's hand in hers, with Bertie standing by her side. Before dying the Queen pronounced Bertie’s name. She died at 6:30 that evening. When her small body was to be placed in the coffin, Kaiser Wilhelm tried to lift it, but Bertie stopped him saying that it was the right of the Queen's sons to place their mother into her coffin, so, putting the Kaiser aside, he and his only surviving brother, the Duke of Connaught, lifted the body and placed it into the coffin.
The Queen's coffin was taken from Osborne to London on board the Royal yacht Alberta. Bertie noticed that the Royal standard in the yacht was at half-mast; he asked the captain the reason at which the man replied: "The Queen is dead sir". But Bertie firmly declared: "But the King is alive", and the standard was raised. The Victorian Era was over and Bertie was now King Edward VII.
Illustrated London News, June 29, 1907 from the Dave Thomson collection. (Mark Twain)
Full Court Dress: low bodice, short sleeves, and train to dress not less than three yards in length from the shoulders. Whether the train is cut round or square is a matter of inclination or fashion. The width at the end should be 54 inches. It is also imperative that a presentation dress should be white if the person presented be an unmarried lady and it is also the fashion for married ladies to wear white on their presentation unless their age rendered their doing so unsuitable The white dresses worn by either debutante or married ladies may be trimmed with either colored or white flowers according to individual taste.
Dinner parties were held primarily to establish and maintain social connections. The hostess of a party had 'guest list' of people she considered worthy of her acquaintance: old friends and new friends, people she wished to cultivate for their distinction or wealth, or for the use they might be to her husband.
The Edwardian period, which covered Edward's reign and was named after him, coincided with the start of a new century and heralded significant changes in technology and society, including powered flight and the rise of socialism and the Labour movement.
He was the first British monarch of the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, which was renamed by his son, George V, to the House of Windsor.
Group picture of Edward VII, Queen Alexandra and family at Sandringham. Seated, Mary, Duchess of York, with Prince Edward of York (later Duke of Windsor), Queen Alexandra (with Prince Henry, later Duke of Gloucester) and King Edward VII. The Duke of York, later King George V, is standing behind his mother and wife.
Windsor, May 20th 1910
On his deathbed at Buckingham Palace, Edward was heard to mutter "I shall not give in, I shall work to the end."
French Propaganda Postcard from the World War I era showing a caricature of Wilhelm II biting into the world. The text reads "The glutton - too hard."