The Death of the Queen

Alas! our noble and generous Queen Victoria is dead,
And I hope her soul to Heaven has fled,
To sing and rejoice with saints above,
Where ah is joy, peace, and love.

’Twas on January 22, 1901, in the evening she died at 6.30 o’clock,
Which to the civilised world has been a great shock;
She was surrounded by her children and grandchildren dear,
And for the motherly, pious Queen they shed many a tear.

She has been a model and faithful Queen,
Very few like her have been;
She has acted virtuously during her long reign,
And I’m afraid the world will never see her like again.

And during her reign she was beloved by the high and the low,
And through her decease the people’s hearts are full of woe,
Because she was kind to her subjects at home and abroad,
And now she’s receiving her reward from the Eternal God.

And during her reign in this world of trouble and strife
Several attempts were made to take her life;
Maclean he tried to shoot her, but he did fail,
But he was arrested and sent to an asylum, which made him bewail.

Victoria was a noble Queen, the people must confess,
She was most charitable to them while in distress;
And in her disposition she wasn’t proud nor vain,
And tears for her loss will fall as plentiful as rain.

The people around Balmoral will shed many tears
Owing to her visits amongst them for many years;
She was very kind to the old, infirm women there,
By giving them provisions and occasionally a prayer.

And while at Balmoral she found work for men unemployed,
Which made the hearts of the poor men feel overjoyed;
And for Her Majesty they would have laid down their lives,
Because sometimes she saved them from starving, and their wives.

Many happy days she spent at Balmoral,
Viewing the blooming heather and the bonnie Highland floral,
Along with Prince Albert, her husband dear,
But alas! when he died she shed many a tear.

She was very charitable, as everybody knows,
But the loss of her husband caused her many woes,
Because he cheered her at Balmoral as they the heather trod,
But I hope she has met him now at the Throne of God.

They ascended the Hill of Morven when she was in her fortieth year,
And Her Majesty was delighted as she viewed the Highland deer;
Also dark Lochnagar, which is most beautiful to see,
Not far from Balmoral and the dark River Dee.

I hope they are walking in Heaven together as they did in life
In the beautiful celestial regions, free from all strife,
Where God’s family together continually meet,
Where the streets are paved with gold, and everything complete.

Alas! for the loss of Queen Victoria the people will mourn,
But she unto them can never return;
Therefore to mourn for her is all in vain,
Knowing that she can never return again.

Therefore, good people, one and all,
Let us be prepared for death when God does on us call,
Like the good and noble Queen Victoria of renown,
The greatest and most virtuous Queen that ever wore a crown.

Feeling in Scotland


Flags flew half-mast high in the sunshine yesterday, at the Castle, the City Chambers, public institutions, hotels, and other buildings. They were the outward expressions of the profound sorrow which the citizens, one and all, felt at the loss of the loved and venerated Sovereign of these realms. In other ways this feeling of grief was manifested. There was a general opinion that with the nation in mourning it would be unseemly if the mere ordinary affairs of life should not be suspended for the moment, and all engagements of a pleasurable nature indefinitely postponed. Many meetings were in this way put off; the Court of Session and the Stock Exchange met and adjourned, and the University and the public schools of all grades also closed their doors for the day. Naturally the decease of the Queen was the chief topic of conversation, though the tendency of human nature to look ahead even under such circumstances was also shown in the speculations that were indulged in as to the proceedings of the Privy Council, the title which the new King was likely to adopt, and as to the day he would be proclaimed at the Cross of Edinburgh. Without waiting to a Lord Chamberlain’s order, many citizens of Edinburgh appeared in mourning. Princes Street was crowded in the afternoon both with ladies and gentlemen, and the number of the former wearing black was quite remarkable. The gentlemen for the most part had put on black neckties. Many of the shop windows along Princes Street and other thoroughfares displayed mourning goods and the demand which was made for them is said to have been very great. In the afternoon, on instructions from the War Office, a minute-gun salute of eighty-one rounds – one gun for every year of the Queen’s age – was fired from Edinburgh Castle. A detachment of the Royal Artillery from Leith Fort formed the firing party, with Captain Arnold and Lieutenant Thomson in charge. Many people thought it would have been more appropriate if the Queen’s death had been made known to the community by the firing of the guns, and that the “salute” yesterday afternoon was rather belated. The booming of the guns was heard all over the town. At the Council Chambers the blinds were drawn and instructions were given to have the front of the buildings draped in mourning. The same will be done with the Corporation stalls in St Giles’ Cathedral against the official service which will be held in that edifice on the funeral day of the Queen. In anticipation of the proclamation ceremony tomorrow workmen were engaged all day in flooring over the cellarage left exposed when the arcading was removed, in order that the barricades in front of the Exchange may be removed and the whole be made safely available for the processionists, of whom a considerable body is expected. Thinking that the proclamation might be made yesterday, a large crowd of people gathered round the Mercat Cross about half-past eleven, and waited until twelve struck on St Giles’. As there was, of course, no appearance of the officials usually associated with such ceremonies, the people gradually dispersed. In the course of the day several addresses from public bodies were transmitted by telegraph to Lord Balfour for presentation to the Prince of Wales and Royal Family, including one from the German residents in Edinburgh and Leith, and a touching tribute of goodwill arrived in the city from the French branch of the Franco-Scottish Society.

The Scotsman, 24th January 1901

Wikipedia Article

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Comments (1) »

  1. Jeremy Salkeld
    In the year 2018, on the 6th day of March at 7:56 pm

    Quite intriguing how McGonagall, within the first two lines of his poem, was able to channel the great Indian poet by the name of A. Nonymous, and his most eloquent verse: ‘Dust to dust and ashes to ashes | Into the tomb the great queen dashes’.

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