Famous Victorians

Rather like Tudor times, there are lots of Victorians whose names are very familiar to us. I find it odd how some bits of history are like that, where other eras get almost forgotten. I've picked just six people, which means I've left out a lot of others who were just as famous, including the inventor of the telephone and the author of Alice in Wonderland (can you name them?).

In The Shimmer on the Glass, Lucy talks about Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert, although she won't have ever seen them except in the picture of Victoria on the family's kitchen wall. In a way, this is quite strange - after all, do you have a picture of Queen Elizabeth II on your kitchen wall? I thought not! But you know exactly what she looks like, don't you?

 

Besides them, you'll find four people to represent different achievements of the Victorian Age: Isambard Kingdom Brunel, perhaps the world's most famous engineer;  Charles Darwin, who came up with the theory of evolution; Florence Nightingale, one of relatively few famous women, who made people see the importance of hygiene in medicine; and Charles Dickens, author of A Christmas Carol, among many other novels.

March of progress from Early Man.jpg

Queen Victoria

Florence Nightingale

Prince Albert

Charles Dickens

Isambard Kingdom Brunel

Charles Darwin

This time-line shows the evolution of mankind from apes to modern humans, which was the logical extension of Charles Darwin's theory of evolution. It's called 'The March of Progress' and was drawn by Rudolph Zallinger. It first appeared in a book called Early Man in 1965 but has since become very famous and inspired lots of joke versions.