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Edward VII
Edward VII

Edward VII (1841-1910), became king of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland in 1901. He was the first son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and belonged to the royal family of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

Edward was born in London and became Prince of Wales when he was an infant. His given name was Albert Edward. He studied at Edinburgh, Oxford, and Cambridge universities. In 1863, he married Princess Alexandra, whose father later became King Christian IX of Denmark.

During Queen Victoria's widowhood, Edward represented her at public gatherings. He was a patron of the arts and sciences and helped found the Royal College of Music. He was also one of England's leading sportsmen. Horses from his stables won the English Derby three times.

Edward was greatly interested in foreign affairs. On a visit to India in 1875 and 1876, he improved relations between the United Kingdom and the princes of India. His official visit to France in 1903 helped make renewed friendship between the UK and France a lasting reality. He became the first reigning British monarch to visit Russia, and his presence there in 1908 strengthened the Anglo-Russian agreement of 1907. His son, George Frederick, succeeded him in 1910 as King George V.