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Albums compiled by Prince Albert, reflecting his beliefs surrounding photography

Attributed to Jabez Hughes (1819-84)

Captain Speedy and Prince Alemayehu, son of Emperor Tewodros II of Ethiopia 1883 copy after an original of 17 July 1868

Carbon carte-de-visite print | 8.9 x 5.9 cm (image) | RCIN 2800864

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Photograph of Prince Alemayehu (also known as 'Alamayou', 'Alamayu' and 'Alamaiou') of Ethiopia (1861-79) standing on the left of Captain Tristram Speedy (1836-1911). Both wear Abyssinian dress, with an Abyssinian shield leaning against the legs of Captain Speedy.

The Prince was the son of Tewodros II, Emperor of Ethiopia, and was brought to England in 1868 to be educated, after the death of his parents. His father had committed suicide following his defeat by British troops at the Battle of Magdala that year. Captain Speedy had a house on the Isle of Wight and while there, the Prince was presented to Queen Victoria at Osborne House. Speedy and the Prince were also photographed by Julia Margaret Cameron, who lived at Freshwater on the Isle of Wight, in July 1868, the same month that this portrait was taken by Jabez Hughes.

Prince Alemayehu died aged 18 and news of his death had an impact on Queen Victoria who wrote in her journal on the 14th November 1879, expressing great sadness on hearing the news of his death: 'Very grieved & shocked to hear by telegram, that good Alemayou [sic] passed away this morning. It is too sad! All alone, in a strange country, without a single person or relative, belonging to him, so young, & so good, but for him one cannot repine. His, was no happy life, full of difficulties of every kind, & he was so sensitive, thinking people stared at him on account of his colour, that I fear he would never have been happy. Everyone is sorry.' RA VIC/MAIN/QVJ (W) 14 November 1879   

  • Creator(s)

    Attributed to Jabez Hughes (1819-84) (photographer)

    Alamayu, Prince of Abyssinia (1861-1879)
    Tristram Charles Sawyer 'Captain' Speedy (1836-1911)
  • 8.9 x 5.9 cm (image)

  • Captain Speedy and Prince Alamayou, son of King Theodore

  • From an album containing works collected and arranged by Prince Albert (before 1861) and by Queen Victoria

  • Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
          • cartes-de-visite