The new Bridgerton series (Queen Charlotte), which can be seen on various streaming services, among others, is presumably not just about a pure love
story. In particular, the story revolves around the rise of a black population into the British upper class. As the first black queen, Charlotte causes a revolution in the British royal court. However, the series creator didn’t just make up the queen’s skin color; it’s based on years of historical discussion.
The love story is not only about Queen Charlotte and her King George, but it is about much more: recognition.
Was the real Queen Charlotte really black? Explanation
Long before the appearance of the Bridgerton series, historians have discussed this question extensively. However, they have never come to a consistent conclusion. It cannot be clearly determined that the wife of King George III actually had ancestors of African origin. Beyond that, however, Charlotte has a distant ancestor in the Portuguese noble family. This ancestor is said to have Moorish roots. However, the question still remains whether Queen Charlotte was actually black.
Rumors also circulated that Queen Charlotte’s unusual skin color proved that she was not the biological daughter of the Duke of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. Rather, her mother is said to have had an affair with a slave who came from Ethiopia. Accordingly, Charlotte is said to be the result of this affair. The name of the affair was supposedly Abram Petrovitch Gannibal. To what extent these rumors correspond to the truth remains to be seen. In fact, however, Charlotte is demonstrably of Moorish descent. Her portraits were often faked, according to which the true identity of the queen was to be hidden.
Who was Queen Charlotte? Life
Sophie Charlotte, Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, was born in Mirow on May 19, 1744, and died on November 17, 1818. Sophie Charlotte was a German princess who became Queen Charlotte and thus Queen of Great Britain and Ireland by marrying King George III. In addition, she was Electress of Brunswick-Lüneburg, and later additionally Queen of Hanover.
The royal couple was happily married to each other, which could be seen early on. Thus she gave birth to the heir to the throne of King George III on August 12, 1762. Moreover, the couple had another 14 children together. The family lived in Kew Palace. Their life was by no means pompous; rather, they lived a normal, middle-class, uncomplicated and simple everyday life. The royal couple took insistent care of the children’s education.
Sophie Charlotte died on November 16, 1818, surrounded by her children. By this time, she had been queen for 57 years. However, she never returned to her old home in Mecklenburg.
Before her marriage, she enjoyed an extensive education in natural sciences, languages and the arts. She caused a sensation with a letter to the Prussian king. In it, she rebuked the behavior of the Prussian army toward Mecklenburg. Legend has it that this brought Sophie Charlotte to the attention of the British King George III, who then asked for her hand in marriage. In her life she devoted herself above all to the education of her 15 children. She was also considered the patron saint of botany and the arts. That is why the bird of paradise flower Strelitzia reginae was named after her.
Queen Charlotte as namesake
All over the world there are still places and regions whose names commemorate Queen Charlotte. In her honor, several cities and towns in North America were named after her. In total, there are seven communities or cities in the USA that bear the name Charlotte, such as the city of Charlotte in the state of North Carolina, which was founded in 1762. It is also the indirect namesake of the Queen Charlotte Islands. Other place names in former British colonies are also included. Last but not least, Mecklenburg County, USA.