From Imperial Federation to the Empty Pavilion: Empire Sentiment in British Empire Cities 1880–1914

  • John Griffiths
Part of the Britain and the World book series (BAW)


This chapter begins with London’s imperial pageant, staged at a point approximately halfway through the period which is under scrutiny in this book. The narrative will then journey from the ‘heart’ of the Empire to what has been designated by some imperial historians as the far-flung ‘periphery’ and to earlier points in time in an attempt to gauge imperial sentiment before 1914.1 The Festival of Empire was staged belatedly (due to the death of Edward VII in 1910) at the Crystal Palace, Sydenham, south London in 1911. Due to the King’s passing, fate dictated that the Festival would mark the early stages of the reign of George V and, in his symbolic role within the imperial domain, it also implicitly heralded a new phase in the history of the British Empire. This was neither the first nor the last time that London had, or would, stage a gathering of the ‘family’ of Empire, having most recently hosted the Diamond Jubilee celebrations of 1897. Indeed, the celebrations had represented one important way in which the British monarchy was being ‘recast’ to increasingly link it with the fortunes of the Empire.2 This recasting had begun in the 1870s, as Disraeli awarded Queen Victoria the title ‘Empress of India’.3


Imperial Culture Vague Objective Imperial Theme Patriotic Sentiment George Versus 
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Copyright information

© John Griffiths 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Griffiths
    • 1
  1. 1.School of HumanitiesMassey UniversityNew Zealand

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