Friday, 14 April 2017

English, Irish & Scottish King James II

JAMES VII OF SCOTLAND & II OF ENGLAND
James II and VII (14 October 1633O.S. – 16 September 1701) was King of England and Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685 until he was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. He was the last Roman Catholic monarch of England, Scotland and Ireland.
English, Irish & Scottish King James II
The second surviving son of Charles I, he ascended the throne upon the death of his brother, Charles II. Members of Britain's Protestant political elite increasingly suspected him of being pro-French and pro-Catholic and of having designs on becoming an absolute monarch.

When he produced a Catholic heir, leading nobles called on his Protestant son-in-law and nephew William of Orange to land an invasion army from the Dutch Republic, which he did in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. James fled England (and thus was held to have abdicated).

He was replaced by his eldest, Protestant daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange. James made one serious attempt to recover his crowns from William and Mary when he landed in Ireland in 1689.

After the defeat of the Jacobite forces by the Williamites at the Battle of the Boyne in July 1690, James returned to France. He lived out the rest of his life as a pretender at a court sponsored by his cousin and ally, King Louis XIV.

James is best known for his struggles with the English Parliament and his attempts to create religious liberty for English Roman Catholics and Protestant nonconformists, against the wishes of the Anglican establishment. This tension made James's four-year reign a struggle for supremacy between the English Parliament and the Crown, resulting in his deposition, the passage of the Bill of Rights, and the accession of his daughter and her husband as king and queen.

James, the second surviving son of King Charles I and his wife, Henrietta Maria of France, was born at St. James's Palace in London on 14 October 1633. Later that same year, he was baptised by William Laud, the Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury.
Henrietta Maria
 He was educated by private tutors, along with his brother, the future King Charles II, and the two sons of the Duke of Buckingham, George and Francis Villiers. At the age of three, James was appointed Lord High Admiral; the position was initially honorary, but would become a substantive office after the Restoration, when James was an adult. He was designated Duke of York at birth, invested with the Order of the Garter in 1642, and formally created Duke of York in January 1644.

As the King's disputes with the English Parliament grew into the English Civil War, James stayed in Oxford, a Royalist stronghold. When the city surrendered after the siege of Oxford in 1646, Parliamentary leaders ordered the Duke of York to be confined in St. James's Palace. In 1648, he escaped from the Palace, aided by Joseph Bampfield, and from there he went to The Hague in disguise. When Charles I was executed by the rebels in 1649, monarchists proclaimed James's older brother as Charles II of England. Charles II was recognised as king by the Parliament of Scotland and the Parliament of Ireland, and was crowned King of Scotland at Scone in 1651. Although he was proclaimed King in Jersey, Charles was unable to secure the crown of England and consequently fled to France and exile.

Archibald Campbell
Like his brother, James sought refuge in France, serving in the French army under Turenne against the Fronde, and later against their Spanish allies.  In the French army James had his first true experience of battle where, according to one observer, he "ventures himself and chargeth gallantly where anything is to be done".

After Richard Cromwell's resignation as Lord Protector in 1659 and the subsequent collapse of the Commonwealth in 1660, Charles II was restored to the English throne. Although James was the heir presumptive, it seemed unlikely that he would inherit the Crown, as Charles was still a young man capable of fathering children.

On 31 December 1660, following his brother's restoration, James was created Duke of Albany in Scotland, to go along with his English title, Duke of York. Upon his return to England, James prompted an immediate controversy by announcing his engagement to Anne Hyde, the daughter of Charles's chief minister, Edward Hyde.

In 1659, while trying to seduce her, James promised he would marry Anne.

 Anne became pregnant in 1660, but following the Restoration and James's return to power, no one at the royal court expected a prince to marry a commoner, no matter what he had pledged beforehand.
Henrietta Anne Stuart, daughter of Henrietta Maria & Charles I
 Although nearly everyone, including Anne's father, urged the two not to marry, the couple married secretly, then went through an official marriage ceremony on 3 September 1660 in London.

Their first child, Charles, was born less than two months later, but died in infancy, as did five further sons and daughters. Only two daughters survived: Mary (born 30 April 1662) and Anne (born 6 February 1665). Samuel Pepys wrote that James was fond of his children and his role as a father, and played with them "like an ordinary private father of a child", a contrast to the distant parenting common with royalty at the time.

James's wife was devoted to him and influenced many of his decisions. Even so, he kept mistresses, including Arabella Churchill and Catherine Sedley, and was reputed to be "the most unguarded ogler of his time." Anne Hyde died in 1671. After the Restoration, James was confirmed as Lord High Admiral, an office that carried with it the subsidiary appointments of Governor of Portsmouth and Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports.

James commanded the Royal Navy during the Second (1665–1667) and Third Anglo-Dutch Wars (1672–1674). Following the raid on the Medway in 1667, James oversaw the survey and re-fortification of the southern coast. The office of Lord High Admiral, combined with his revenue from post office and wine tariffs (granted him by Charles upon his restoration) gave James enough money to keep a sizeable court household.
New Netherlands by John Ogilby
In 1664, Charles granted American territory between the Delaware and Connecticut rivers to James. Following its capture by the English the former Dutch territory of New Netherland and its principal port, New Amsterdam, were named the Province and City of New York in James's honour. After the founding, the duke gave part of the colony to proprietors George Carteret and John Berkeley.

Fort Orange, 240 kilometres (150 mi) north on the Hudson River, was renamed Albany after James's Scottish title. In 1683, he became the governor of the Hudson's Bay Company, but did not take an active role in its governance.
America
 James also headed the Royal African Company, a slave trading company.

In September 1666, his brother Charles put him in charge of firefighting operations in the Great Fire of London, in the absence of action by Lord Mayor Thomas Bloodworth. This was not a political office, but his actions and leadership were noteworthy. "The Duke of York hath won the hearts of the people with his continual and indefatigable pains day and night in helping to quench the Fire", wrote a witness in a letter on 8 September.

James's time in France had exposed him to the beliefs and ceremonies of Catholicism; he and his wife, Anne, became drawn to that faith. James took Eucharist in the Roman Catholic Church in 1668 or 1669, although his conversion was kept secret for some time and he continued to attend Anglican services until 1676. In spite of his conversion, James continued to associate primarily with Anglicans, including John Churchill and George Legge, as well as French Protestants, such as Louis de Duras, the Earl of Feversham.

Growing fears of Catholic influence at court led the English Parliament to introduce a new Test Act in 1673. Under this Act, all civil and military officials were required to take an oath (in which they were required to disavow the doctrine of transubstantiation and denounce certain practices of the Catholic Church as superstitious and idolatrous) and to receive the Eucharist under the auspices of the Church of England. James refused to perform either action, instead choosing to relinquish the post of Lord High Admiral. His conversion to Catholicism was thereby made public.

Charles died in 1685 from apoplexy after converting to Catholicism on his deathbed. Having no legitimate children, Charles was succeeded by his brother James, who reigned in England and Ireland as James II, and in Scotland as James VII.
Anne Hyde
 There was little initial opposition to his accession, and there were widespread reports of public rejoicing at the orderly succession. James wanted to proceed quickly to the coronation, and was crowned with his wife at Westminster Abbey on 23 April 1685.

The new Parliament that assembled in May 1685, which gained the name of "Loyal Parliament", was initially favourable to James, and the new King sent word that even most of the former exclusionists would be forgiven if they acquiesced to his rule.

Most of Charles's officers continued in office, the exceptions being the promotion of James's brothers-in-law, the Earls of Clarendon and Rochester, and the demotion of Halifax.

Parliament granted James a generous life income, including all of the proceeds of tonnage and poundage and the customs duties. James worked harder as king than his brother had, but was less willing to compromise when his advisers disagreed.

Soon after becoming king, James faced a rebellion in southern England led by his nephew, the Duke of Monmouth, and another rebellion in Scotland led by Archibald Campbell, the Earl of Argyll. Argyll and Monmouth both began their expeditions from Holland, where James's nephew and son-in-law, William of Orange, had neglected to detain them or put a stop to their recruitment efforts.

Argyll sailed to Scotland and, on arriving there, raised recruits mainly from his own clan, the Campbells. The rebellion was quickly crushed, and Argyll was captured at Inchinnan on 18 June 1685. Having arrived with fewer than 300 men and unable to convince many more to flock to his standard, he never posed a credible threat to James.
James Francis Edward Stuart
 Argyll was taken as a prisoner to Edinburgh. A new trial was not commenced because Argyll had previously been tried and sentenced to death. The King confirmed the earlier death sentence and ordered that it be carried out within three days of receiving the confirmation.

Monmouth's rebellion was coordinated with Argyll's, but the former was more dangerous to James. Monmouth had proclaimed himself King at Lyme Regis on 11 June. He attempted to raise recruits but was unable to gather enough rebels to defeat even James's small standing army.

Monmouth's rebellion attacked the King's forces at night, in an attempt at surprise, but was defeated at the Battle of Sedgemoor. The King's forces, led by Feversham and Churchill, quickly dispersed the ill-prepared rebels. Monmouth was captured and later executed at the Tower of London on 15 July. The King's judges—most notably, George Jeffreys—condemned many of the rebels to transportation and indentured servitude in the West Indies in a series of trials that came to be known as the Bloody Assizes. Some 250 of the rebels were executed. While both rebellions were defeated easily, they hardened James's resolve against his enemies and increased his suspicion of the Dutch.

To protect himself from further rebellions, James sought safety by enlarging his standing army. This alarmed his subjects, not only because of the trouble soldiers caused in the towns, but because it was against the English tradition to keep a professional army in peacetime.
Fake James Francis Edward Stuart
 Even more alarming to Parliament was James's use of his dispensing power to allow Roman Catholics to command several regiments without having to take the oath mandated by the Test Act.

When even the previously supportive Parliament objected to these measures, James ordered Parliament prorogued in November 1685, never to meet again in his reign.

In the beginning of 1686 two papers were found in Charles II's strong box and his closet, in his own hand, stating the arguments for Catholicism over Protestantism.

James published these papers with a declaration signed by his sign manual and challenged the Archbishop of Canterbury and the whole Anglican episcopal bench to refute Charles's arguments: "Let me have a solid answer, and in a gentlemanlike style; and it may have the effect which you so much desire of bringing me over to your church." The Archbishop refused on the grounds of respect for the late king. In April 1688, James re-issued the Declaration of Indulgence, subsequently ordering Anglican clergy to read it in their churches. When seven Bishops, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, submitted a petition requesting the reconsideration of the King's religious policies, they were arrested and tried for seditious libel. Public alarm increased when Queen Mary gave birth to a Roman Catholic son and heir, James Francis Edward, on 10 June that year.

When James's only possible successors were his two Protestant daughters, Anglicans could see his pro-Catholic policies as a temporary phenomenon, but when the prince's birth opened the possibility of a permanent Catholic dynasty, such men had to reconsider their position.
Charles I
 Threatened by a Catholic dynasty, several influential Protestants claimed the child was "supposititious" and had been smuggled into the Queen's bedchamber in a warming pan.

They had already entered into negotiations with William, Prince of Orange, when it became known the Queen was pregnant, and the birth of James's son reinforced their convictions.

On 30 June 1688, a group of seven Protestant nobles invited the Prince of Orange to come to England with an army. By September, it had become clear that William sought to invade.

Believing that his own army would be adequate, James refused the assistance of Louis XIV, fearing that the English would oppose French intervention.

When William arrived on 5 November 1688, many Protestant officers, including Churchill, defected and joined William, as did James's own daughter, Princess Anne. James lost his nerve and declined to attack the invading army, despite his army's numerical superiority. On 11 December, James tried to flee to France, allegedly first throwing the Great Seal of the Realm into the River Thames.

He was captured in Kent; later, he was released and placed under Dutch protective guard.
 Having no desire to make James a martyr, the Prince of Orange let him escape on 23 December. James was received by his cousin and ally, Louis XIV, who offered him a palace and a pension.

With the assistance of French troops, James landed in Ireland in March 1689. The Irish Parliament did not follow the example of the English Parliament; it declared that James remained King and passed a massive bill of attainder against those who had rebelled against him. At James's urging, the Irish Parliament passed an Act for Liberty of Conscience that granted religious freedom to all Roman Catholics and Protestants in Ireland. James worked to build an army in Ireland, but was ultimately defeated at the Battle of the Boyne on 1 July 1690[O.S.] when William arrived, personally leading an army to defeat James and reassert English control.

James fled to France once more, departing from Kinsale, never to return to any of his former kingdoms.
William III of Orange
 Because he deserted his Irish supporters, James became known in Ireland as Séamus an Chaca or "James the Shit". Despite this popular perception, Breandán Ó Buachalla argued that "Irish political poetry for most of the eighteenth century is essentially Jacobite poetry", and both Ó Buachalla and Éamonn Ó Ciardha argued that James and his successors played a central role as messianic figures throughout the eighteenth century for all classes in Ireland.

In France, James was allowed to live in the royal château of Saint-Germain-en-Laye. James's wife and some of his supporters fled with him, including the Earl of Melfort; most, but not all, were Roman Catholic. In 1692, James's last child, Louisa Maria Teresa, was born. Some supporters in England attempted to assassinate William III to restore James to the throne in 1696, but the plot failed and the backlash made James's cause less popular.

Louis XIV's offer to have James elected King of Poland in the same year was rejected, for James feared that acceptance of the Polish crown might (in the minds of the English people) render him incapable of being King of England. After Louis concluded peace with William in 1697, he ceased to offer much in the way of assistance to James. During his last years, James lived as an austere penitent. He wrote a memorandum for his son advising him on how to govern England, specifying that Catholics should possess one Secretary of State, one Commissioner of the Treasury, the Secretary at War, with the majority of the officers in the army.

He died of a brain haemorrhage on 16 September 1701 at Saint-Germain-en-Laye. James's heart was placed in a silver-gilt locket and given to the convent at Chaillot, and his brain was placed in a lead casket and given to the Scots College in Paris. His entrails were placed in two gilt urns and sent to the parish church of Saint-Germain-en-Laye and the English Jesuit college at Saint-Omer, while the flesh from his right arm was given to the English Augustinian nuns of Paris.


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