From Victoria R - the Royal gifts of Hughenden

Discover the stories behind the gifts given to our famous resident, Benjamin Disraeli, by Queen Victoria in our new top floor Manor exhibition.

Queen Victoria's favourite Prime Minister

From Monday 19 February 2018

Benjamin Disraeli was amongst the closest friends of Queen Victoria. Over the course of more than twenty years she showered him with gifts, letters and keepsakes.

This exhibition charts the development of the special relationship from initial dislike to the Queens’s second great heartbreak at the loss of her dear Earl of Beaconsfield.

Included in this exhibition are some of Hughenden’s most treasured objects including the Garter Jewel.

Order of the Garter

1878

Upon returning from the Congress of Berlin in 1878 Queen Victoria sent her Private Secretary to Downing Street with a large bouquet of flowers from Windsor, as well as a suggestion that Disraeli might be created a Knight of the Garter.  The Order of the Garter is the oldest and most prestigious order of British chivalry.  The Order can only contain twenty four knights at a time, and it is granted as the personal gift of the sovereign.  Disraeli commented:

“He will not trust himself now in endeavouring to express what he feels to your Majesty’s kindness.  He thinks that he is ennobled through your Majesty’s goodness quite enough, though with infinite deference to your Majesty’s gracious pleasure, he would presume to receive the Garter; but, as he always feels, your Majesty’s kind thoughts are dearer to him than any personal distinction, however rich and rare.  The belief that your Majesty trusts, and approves of, him is more precious than rubies!”

The Garter Jewel gifted to Benjamin Disraeli by Queen Victoria 1878
The Garter Jewel gifted to Benjamin Disraeli by Queen Victoria 1878

Visit today and discover all about the fascinating objects that Benjamin Disraeli regarded as ‘more precious than rubies’.