Queen Victoria to King Leopold I of Belgium – 16 March 1861
On this, the most dreadful day of my life, does your poor broken-hearted child write one line of love and devotion. She is gone! That precious, dearly beloved tender Mother – whom I never was parted from but for a few months – without I can’t imagine life – has been taken from us! It is too dreadful! But she is at peace – at rest- her fearful sufferings at an end! It was quite painless – though there was very distressing, heart rendering breathing to witness. I held her dear, dear hand in mind to the very last, which I am truly thankful for! But the watching that precious life going out was fearful!
Dearest Albert is dreadfully overcome – and well he may, for she adored him!1