Victoria & Abdul : The True Story of the Queen's Closest Confidant, Paperback Book

Victoria & Abdul : The True Story of the Queen's Closest Confidant Paperback

4 out of 5 (1 rating)


The tall, handsome Abdul Karim was just twenty-four years old when he arrived in England from Agra to wait at tables during Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee.

An assistant clerk at Agra Central Jail, he suddenly found himself a personal attendant to the Empress of India herself.

Within a year, he was established as a powerful figure at court, becoming the queen's teacher, or Munshi, and instructing her in Urdu and Indian affairs.

Devastated by the death of John Brown, her Scottish ghillie, the queen had at last found his replacement.

But her intense and controversial relationship with the Munshi led to a near-revolt in the royal household. "Victoria & Abdul" examines how a young Indian Muslim came to play a central role at the heart of the empire, and his influence over the queen at a time when independence movements in the sub-continent were growing in force.

Yet, at its heart, it is a tender love story between an ordinary Indian and his elderly queen, a relationship that survived the best attempts to destroy it.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 288 pages, Illustrations, maps, ports.
  • Publisher: The History Press Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: British & Irish history
  • ISBN: 9780752458533

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As someone who didn't really have any knowledge about Victoria's Indian Secretary, the Munshi, I really didn't go into this book with any preconceived notions.This is an excellent study examining the relationship between Queen Victoria, Abdul, and the London Court. The author does an incredible job bringing this story to light.Any fan of Queen Victoria should read this.

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