A scrapbook featuring a selection of memorabilia from Queen Victoria’s childhood is to be sold at Grisebach auction house in Berlin.
The remarkable collection was compiled by Baroness Louise Lehzen, Victoria’s governess.
Victoria's governess, Baroness Louise Lehzen, collected these mementos
Lehzen was appointed to the role in 1819, when Victoria turned five. The two remained extraordinarily close, with Lehzen sleeping in a room adjoining Victoria’s well into the Princess Royal’s early 20s.
Victoria privately referred to her as “mother”.
Victoria's husband, Prince Albert, was extremely unhappy with this arrangement. Lehzen had a huge amount of control over Victoria and made no secret of her dislike for him.
In 1841, he succeeded in convincing Victoria to get rid of her.
The contents of the book date from 1819-1842. They include illustrations by Victoria, alongside writings and fragments of her wedding dress.
The main highlight, however, looks set to be a collection of hair from the Queen’s childhood right up until Lehzen was ousted from Buckingham Palace.
Auction house expert Patrick Golenia said: “We know that Queen Victoria sent a lot of hair samples, and that this was very typical of the time.
“But this is the largest number of her hair samples to be found in one place – except perhaps for the pillow on which she died.
“What we have here is an important historical object because it is testimony to the unbelievably close friendship, almost familial one between a teacher and her pupil, a queen and her employee.”
The lot is expected to sell for up to $48,000 in Berlin on November 30.
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