An entire era is named for her and symbolizes uptight attitudes about sensuality.
But it turns out Queen Victoria may have had a behind-closed-doors side not suspected by the 19th Century public. Imperious, unapproachable, often speaking in an aloof plural first person — as in, “We are not amused” — she gave her name to the Victorian Age, during which pregnant women went into seclusion, piano legs wore trousers and doctors did not examine female patients, instead used dolls on which women demurely pointed to the area of their symptoms.
However, at age 24, Her Majesty posed for a racy portrait that Windsor Castle kept behind closed doors for more than a century.
The portrait was painted in 1843 by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, commissioned by Victoria and given to Prince Albert, her beloved