Virtual Victorians seeks to re-examine the networks of remediation that allow contemporary researchers to reconstruct the distant nineteenth century, which has at this point necessarily become an artificial simulation. Our own virtual Victorians come to us out of the archives, which are increasingly available to computational analysis via digital surrogates; the first half of this volume considers the distinctive opportunities for literary scholarship that online research tools create. Contributors argue that our mediated distance from the Victorian era allows us to see that it too is immersed in virtuality – both optical and textual – as a result of its own novel technologies and networks. The second half of Virtual Victorians outlines a prehistory of digital virtuality by exploring specific Victorian cultural forms and their imaginative legacies – from the "Panorama of London" of the late 1820s to early cinema around the turn of the century. In this way, the volume addresses pivotal issues in the digital humanities from a historical perspective.