Bridgerton season 1 includes a story about Queen Charlotte meeting Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, so how much is historically accurate? Here are the facts.
Bridgerton season 1 includes a story about Queen Charlotte (Golda Rosheuvel) meeting Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, so how much is historically accurate? In the second Netflix episode, “Shock and Delight,” the royal leader enjoys a bit of snuff while speaking with Violet Bridgerton (Ruth Gemmell) and tells a personal anecdote about her influence over an iconic musical prodigy. As it turns out, the Queen’s story is mostly true.
In Bridgerton season 1, the Queen pays close attention to the happenings in 1803 London. She’s especially intrigued by the gossip articles of Lady Whistledown, who seems to have powerful sources and reliable information about high society individuals, such as Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor), the Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page), and the “Incomparable” Marina Thompson (Ruby Barker); the beautiful cousin of the Featherington family. In “Shock and Delight,” the Queen meets with Violet and discusses the future of Daphne.
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When Violet arrives at Buckingham House in Bridgerton season 1, she identifies music being played as “quite beautiful” and asks the Queen if it’s one of Mozart’s works. The famous Austrian composer had passed away 12 years prior at age 35, and the Queen fondly remembers her visit with the pianist when he was around 10 years old. She states that Mozart accompanied her during an aria performance, and recalls saying that the boy “should become one of the finest composers in Europe.” In real life, the Queen was indeed a patron of the arts and did actually meet with Mozart in 1764. At the time, Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz would’ve been 20 years old and three years into her reign.
In 1764, Mozart was eight years old when he visited Buckingham House, so the Queen must be slightly fuzzy about the details in Bridgerton. The young musician reportedly (via Royal Central) spent 15 months in London during the family’s “Great European Tour,” and accepted an invitation to perform for King George III and Queen Charlotte on April 27, 1864 – just four days after arriving in London. The Queen was apparently a talented singer and harpsichord player, and she did indeed sing during one of Mozart’s performances approximately one month later. The boy would never again visit London during his lifetime, and he later dedicated six sonatas to his royal benefactor, the Queen. In a letter (via Royal Collection Trust), young Mozart humbly expressed his gratitude:
“To the Queen Madam, Full of pride and joy at daring to offer a homage to You, I finished these Sonatas in order to lay them at the feet of your majesty; I was, I confess, intoxicated with vanity and ravished myself when I perceived the Genius of Music at my side… It is said that everything should be allowed to Genius; I owe mine the happiness of pleasing You, and I forgive it its caprices. Deign, Madam, to receive my poor gifts.”
The Queen’s Mozart tale in Bridgerton season 1 isn’t merely a passing moment, but rather an allegory about her immediate expectations. Daphne has been linked to both the Duke of Hastings and Nigel Pembroke (Jamie Beamish), and so the Queen delivers a message to her mother about following through on expectations, and how it would be in the family’s best interest if Daphne decided to leave home, just like young Mozart.
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