Contents of this article
The website makes available 141 volumes of Queen Victoria's journal (or detailed diary), the first of which dates from 1832 when she was still Princess Victoria. It also includes a number of contextual essays, for example by Marina Warner on 'Queen Victoria's sketchbook', and a comprehensive timeline of the monarch's life and reign. Access to Queen Victoria's Journals is free within the UK, but elsewhere is on a subscription-only basis.
Strengths and weaknesses
The journals offer a fascinating insight both into the private life of Queen Victoria and into important matters of state. A full-text search is available, but it's also possible to search by place, name or place of writing. The many illustrations in the journals and Victoria's sketchbook can be browsed separately.
Users should be aware that there are four different versions of the journals: originals in the queen's hand (13 volumes covering the period 1832-6); abridged transcripts produced by her youngest daughter Princess Beatrice (111 volumes, covering the period 1837-1901); typed transcripts produced for Lord Esher, the first Keeper of the Royal Archives (13 volumes, covering the period 1832-40); and finally, four volumes of drafts written by the queen herself.
The website makes available high-resolution colour images of all pages of the surviving journals, with separate images of illustrations and inserts etc. The text of the journals has been transcribed and re-keyed, and is fully searchable.
About the project
The project is a partnership between the Bodleian Libraries and the Royal Archives, working in collaboration with ProQuest.