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THE idea under which this work originated was a desire to furnish, in proper chronological order, a record of the leading events and incidents of the present reign which had a personal relation to the Sovereign. As research for this purpose was extended, additional incidents and more copious details were introduced, until the work swelled to a size far beyond the limits at first anticipated. The consequence was, that the original purpose was expanded into a compilation of the nature expressed on the title-page, and of which the present volume is the first instalment.
The Diary' thus elaborated from a great variety of sources is in some respects of quite a unique character. It will, however, the compiler believes, form a tolerably complete and most interesting compendium of those numerous Royal acts which Queen VICTORIA has performed with so much grace; of the various public appearances she has made; of the eminent persons she has visited and by whom she has been visited; of the frequent journeys and marine excursions she has undertaken; of the many pleasurable and painful experiences which have fallen to her lot; and, generally of those varied social and political occurrences with which Her Majesty has been more or less intimately associated during a long and singularly prosperous reign. The work