SARA Forbes Bonetta lived a remarkable life, fraught with tragedy and punctuated by unbelievable twists of fate.
Here's all you need to know about the former slave who became Queen Victoria's goddaughter.
Originally named "Aina", Sara was born into royalty as a princess of the Yoruba people, an African ethnic group, in 1843.
Aged just five, Sara lived through an attack on her village, Oke-Odan in Nigeria, by a warring tribe.
Her parents were killed in the attack, leaving Sara as a slave – seemingly destined to be used as a human sacrifice.
But she was saved from the horror when a naval Captain called Frederick E. Forbes intervened and convinced the King of Dahomey, a region in what is now known as Benin, to give her to Queen Victoria.
Captain Forbes renamed her Sara Forbes Bonetta, after his ship, the HMS Bonetta, and the young princess quickly impressed Queen Victoria with her exceptional intelligence.
Queen Victoria had Sara raised as her goddaughter, and she lived as a wealthy young woman throughout her schooling inbetween in England and Africa.
In 1862, Sara married Captain James Pinson Labulo Davies, a wealth businessman from a region in modern-day Nigeria.
The happy couple moved back to their native Africa, having three kids together and keeping up their close friendship with Queen Victoria.
However, tragedy eventually caught up with Sara, and she died of tuberculosis on 15 August 1880.
ITV’s hit show Victoria follows the life of Queen Victoria.
The British drama was created by Daisy Goodwin, and stars Jenna Coleman as Victoria and Tom Hughes as Prince Albert.
The Victoria Special will air on Christmas Day at 9pm on ITV1.
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