BERLIN – A scrapbook that belonged to a former queen of the United Kingdom and was set to go on auction later in the week was showcased at an auction house in the German capital Berlin on Tuesday.
The paper-bound Moroccan leader scrapbook features a collection of memorabilia from Queen Victoria’s childhood, including locks of hair, drawings by the queen herself, photographs annotated in the queen’s handwriting, letters and fabric from her wedding dress, Grisebach auction house said in the lot information on its website.
“The album on offer at our auction comes from the estate of Baroness von Lehzen’s descendants and was first presented to the public in 1999,” Grisebach said.
The auction house recalled that Von Lehzen, who arrived to Kensington Palace from the northern German city of Hanover in 1819, became Victoria’s governess when she was a five-year-old princess, and the pair formed a close bond.
“(Louise is) the most affectionate, devoted, attached, and disinterested friend I have, and I love her most dearly,” the queen wrote in her journal at the age of 16.
Upon the queen’s marriage to Prince Albert in 1840, however, their relationship ended, and Von Lehzen was cut off from Victoria’s entourage.
Images captured by an epa photojournalist showed a Grisebach employee carefully thumbing through the document, which the queen – and later empress – gave to Von Lehzen as a gift in 1941.
The item was expected to fetch between 30,000-40,000 euros ($35,300-$47,100) at auction on Thursday.
Victoria ruled over the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, as well as the British Empire’s vast overseas possessions, from 1837-1901, a period known as the Victorian Era.
It was the longest reign of any British monarch until her great-great-granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II, surpassed her in September 2015.