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Queen Victoria and her Soldiers
Queen Victoria was always proud of her brave soldiers. In time of war, she gave orders that news of them was to be sent to her every day, and when the generals returned home, they were commanded to visit her, and to tell her of the bravery of the troops.

During the long war with the Russians in the Crimea, the British soldiers suffered greatly from the freezing winds, and rain, and snow, of that cold land. When Queen Victoria heard of this, she and her children worked with their own hands to make warm clothing for them. A great many of the wounded and sick men were sent home in ships, to be nursed in the English hospitals, and the Queen paid several visits to the poor fellows as they lay there. Moving from one bed to another, she cheered them with hopeful words, and listened gladly to their stories of the battles in which they had fought. When she saw that the hospitals were crowded, and not very comfortable, she told Parliament that better ones ought to be provided, and after a time this was done, and the fine hospital of Netley was built, of which the Queen laid the first stone.

Once, Queen Victoria herself gave medals to some wounded and disabled soldiers who had fought very bravely. Some of these men could not raise their arms to salute their queen; some could not walk, but had to be wheeled in chairs to her side; but all were proud to receive their medals of honour from her hands.

"Noble fellows," she wrote of them afterwards, "I feel as if they were my own children."


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