The Queen’s Knight
Sir Howard Elphinstone distinguished himself as a hero of the Crimean War at the early age of 29 for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross. As he recovered from his injuries Queen Victoria and Prince Albert chose him to be governor to their son, Prince Arthur. Although the Queen did not approve of Elphinstone’s use of corporal punishment she was persuaded that her favourite son’s best interests were being served.
After Albert’s death in 1861 Elphinstone became closer to the royal family, acting as surrogate father to Arthur and his siblings but especially, he became a close friend and ally to Victoria.
Martyn Downer is married to Elphinstone’s great-great-granddaughter and this excellent account is the result of his being able to access hitherto unseen documents.