since about Victorian times (roughly 1837 on)
No wonder Victoria was instantly charmed by the tall, elegant Karim... he was a young, handsome bloke and Victoria was in any case a lover of India. But scandalous? That smacks of racism, doesn't it? If a European had risen from waiting tables to travelling with the queen, teaching her Urdu and lived in a grace-and-favour-cottage near the palace, noone would have said a word. Unless Victoria did a Prince of Wales trick and slept with the entire court - which was very unlikely.
As far as I can judge, Victoria wasn't racist but seemed to like stromg positive men. I don't think she slept with anyone else than Albert but had a strong sex drive which was attracted to John Brown and this chap. She would have enjoyed more modrn times as she hated giving birth but enjoyed the act itself. Some of the nude paintings she bought as presents for Albert are remarkable even today.
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