Lady Flora Hastings was the subject of a national scandal in the early part of Victoria's reign. She was lady-in-waiting to the Duchess of Kent, the Queen's mother and a regular acquaintance of the 20-year-old monarch. However, in 1839 it was pointed out that Flora was showing signs of pregnancy. The Queen denounced not only Flora but the entire Hastings family. Six months later, Flora Hastings died from a malignant tumour in the liver which had been the cause of her abdominal swelling. Following this, public villification of the Queen reached such a pitch that she and Lord Melbourne were publicly hissed and the Whig administration was attacked in Parliament.