Recently, ITV has broadcasted a show called ‘Victoria’ starring Jenna Coleman to depict the life of Queen Victoria. Among watching, a few historical inaccuracies seemed glaringly obvious that were fabricated to dramatize the life of Queen Victoria. Of course, the show is a drama, meaning that it is no real surprise that certain storylines in the show were invented in order to engage the viewers and gain better critical interest, however, these inaccuracies should be pointed out in order to avoid confusion.
Firstly, the relationship between Victoria and Melbourne is extensively over exaggerated, pointed out by my mother as well as myself. After Victoria’s father, the Duke of Kent, died when Victoria was very young, Melbourne became almost a father figure towards the young Queen, and there was never a lot of evidence to suggest that the relationship was romantic in any sense. The flirting and romantic gestures depicted in the show emphasise that the relationship involved romantic affections, however, this is inaccurate and Victoria saw Melbourne as an advisor and fatherly figure, as opposed to a romantic interest.
Secondly, the plot to depict Victoria as insane by the extensive outbreaks of rats into the palace never occurred. This was fabricated in order to add drama to the show and seems unrealistic and frankly is not true. Queen Victoria did, in fact, have rat catchers employed in the palace by the name of Jack Black, however, this plot was solely used to add interest to the show as there is no record of this ever happening.
Lastly, the plot to steal Victoria’s power by her mother, the Duchess of Kent, and her uncle, Duke of Cumberland, did not happen. This was also fictional and made to add drama to the show. This is believed to be based on a historical rumour, however, it did not happen and is one of the main historical inaccuracies of the show.
Therefore, the show, albeit interesting, can be seen as historically inaccurate as these sections of the drama were fictional and created in order to dramatize Victoria’s life. However, the show is definitely worth watching to anyone interested in this era regardless, and Jenna Coleman, although not a true depiction of the Queen physically and morally, portrays her character well. Consequently, despite the inaccuracies, the show is worth the watch and I look forward to continuing to view it. If anyone has noted any further historical inaccuracies, feel free to let me know.
From, The Victorian Blogger