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Dr. Helen Rappaport- Queen Victoria

Dr Helen Rappaport is a Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author and award winning historian specialising in the period 1837–1918 in late Imperial and revolutionary Russia and Victorian Britain. She has written 14 books.

Selected works

  • Queen Victoria, The Heart and Mind of a Young Queen

  • The Victoria Letters

  • Joseph Stalin

  • Women Social Reformers

  • The Romanovs

Anchor 1

Episode #1

Q: Helen Rappaport – Queen Victoria – Intro


  • Passionate about Victorian period as a child

  • Admired the Queen

  • Became a professional writer

  • Also write about the Romanovs

Episode #2

Q: Why was Queen Victoria such a compelling historical figure?


  • Became Queen after 5 kings

  • Pretty, young, 19, untainted

  • Refreshing change

  • A clean slate

Episode #3

Q: What was the monarchy like under Victoria?


  • Early years – overreach, mistakes

  • Prime Minster Melbourne taught her how to be a queen

  • Husband Albert was a dominant influence

  • After Albert’s death: transcendent, wonderful, matriarchal figure

Episode #4

Q: Was Queen Victoria trained for her political role as Queen?


  • She learned on the job

  • Her uncle Leopold, King of Belgium, guided her

  • Albert then edged everyone else out

Episode #5

Q:  Did Queen Victoria share power with Prime Ministers?


  • Melbourne met with her daily for 3-4 years

  • Revolutions across Europe in 1840s were of grave concern

  • Her mournful retreat threatened the monarchy

  • Disraeli coaxed her out of isolation & saved her

Episode #6

Q: What were Queen Victoria's main accomplishments?


  • Longevity, consistency, sense of security

  • Britain a center, world power

  • Enormous, expansive empire

Episode #7

Q: Was Victoria a bigot or racist?


  • Aristocracy was anti- Semitic, anti-Catholic

  • Victoria was not typical of that bigotry

  • She did not judge people by their color or creed

  • Victoria knighted Moses Montefiore

  • Victoria promoted Nethaniel Rothschild

Episode #8

Q: Was Victoria religious?


  • Not a rampant Christian

  • Believer, G-d fearing

  • Liked simplicity in religion

  • Faith was a Presbyterian Scottish one

Episode #9

Q: Did Victoria write?


  • Journal is 100 volumes

  • One of most important primary 19th century sources

  • Astonishing work of a mother, woman & queen

  • However, heavily redacted after her death

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