The Glorious Revolution
ONE HELL OF A FAMILY FEUD!
BY MICHAEL C. WHEELER (MA)
To Sum Up
How William of Orange kicked the crap out of James II of England in 1688 and assumed the
OK, you can go home now…
No Conflict is Without It’s Beginnings
All conflict is rooted in something earlier
So, let’s discuss some of these family squabbles and a little history while we’re at it.
the exercise of absolute power, especially in a cruel and oppressive way.
"the King's arbitrary despotism"
a country or political system where the ruler holds absolute power.
plural noun: despotisms
The Tudors – About as Close to Despots
The family originally came to prominence in the 14th century with John Beaufort, an illegitimate
child of the English Prince John of Gaunt.
In 1455 John Beaufort’s granddaughter married Edmund Tudor (Henry VI’s half-brother)
Edmund’s father Owen who took his grandfather’s family name originally “Tewdur” which in the
Welsh language means “King of the Land.”
King Henry VI and his son were murdered in 1471 and Richard III assumed the throne. Two years
later Richard was defeated by Henry Tudor and thus crowned himself Henry VII
The most infamous member of the Tudor family was King Henry VIII
King Henry VIII Highlights
Sought absolute power as a monarch
Had his 2nd and 5th wife executed (Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard)
Married a total of 6 times
Started the Church of England
After his death, his daughter Mary I, from his first marriage (a Catholic) assumed a kind of joint
control with Elizabeth I and Edward VI (Henry’s son from his 3rd marriage – he was 9 at the time)
This takes us to James the VI of Scotland
and James I of England (1567-1625)
His Son was Charles I (1600 -1649)
Created a rule of economic paternalism –
***men only could inherit wealth
Did NOT get along with parliament,
tried to undermine them practically his entire life
***All around shady fellow
This got him executed in 1649 – the first execution
of a king in modern history .
Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658)
A Revolutionary in his own right –
he was pro-parliamentarian
meaning that he did not agree
with absolute rule of monarchs.
Was primarily responsible for the trial of Charles I
Became something of a de-facto king – but had no real
Charles II (1630-1685)
Son of Charles I, assumed control of the throne after
Oliver Cromwell’s son proved to be an inept leader
Charles II ruled from 1660 to 1685
The NEXT King was James II
Publically converted to Catholicism in 1672
Married an Italian Princess named Mary
Granted Catholics ability to serve in military, parliament,
Was not well liked, but tolerated
The popular perception was that he was old
…and would die soon
Let’s listen to this guy talk about it
James II had them arrested and locked
But they got out – good lawyers I guess
An Unexpected Problem
James Francis Edward was borne in June 1688 – which meant that the British people would have
to endure more from the family.
However, Mary II (James’s Daughter) was
not a Catholic… and…
She was married to a very charismatic young protestant leader in the Netherlands (William of
William was so popular that…
Several Englishmen secretly wrote to him asking him to invade England
Letters state that the king (James) is unworthy of the crown
Also speculates that the infant child is not actually his liniage
The first paragraph
We have great satisfaction to find by 35 [Russell], and since by Monsieur Zuylestein that your
Highness is so ready and willing to give us such assistances as they have related to us. We have
great reason to believe we shall be every day in a worse condition than we are, and less able to
defend ourselves, and therefore we do earnestly wish we might be so happy as to find a remedy
before it be too late for us to contribute to our own deliverance. But although these be our
wishes, yet we will by no means put your Highness into any expectations which may misguide
your own councils in this matter; so that the best advice we can give is to inform your Highness
truly both of the state of things here at this time and of the difficulties which appear to us.
As to the first, the people are so generally dissatisfied with the present conduct of the government in relation to
their religion, liberties and properties (all which have been greatly invaded), and they are in such expectation of
their prospects being daily worse, that your Highness may be assured there are nineteen parts of twenty of the
people throughout the kingdom who are desirous of a change, and who, we believe, would willingly contribute to
it, if they had such a protection to countenance their rising as would secure them from being destroyed before
they could get to be in a posture able to defend themselves. It is no less certain that much the greatest part of
the nobility and gentry are as much dissatisfied, although it be not safe to speak to many of them beforehand;
and there is no doubt but that some of the most considerable of them would venture themselves with your
Highness at your first landing, whose interests would be able to draw great numbers to them whenever they
could protect them and the raising and drawing men together. And if such a strength could be landed as were
able to defend itself and them till they could be got together into some order, we make no question but that
strength would quickly be increased to a number double to the army here, although their army should all remain
firm to them; whereas we do upon very good grounds believe that their army then would be very much divided
among themselves, many of the officers being so discontented that they continue in their service only for a
subsistence (besides that some of their minds are known already), and very many of the common soldiers do
daily shew such an aversion to the popish religion that there is the greatest probability imaginable of great
numbers of deserters which would come from them should there be such an occasion; and amongst the seamen
it is almost certain there is not one in ten who would do them any service in such a war.
An Army Bankrolled
A banker, Baron Francisco Lopes Suasso (1657-1710) raised 2 million Gilders – no clue how much
money that is these days, but needless to say, he was able to raise an army of 25,000 soldiers.
At the same time, King Louis XIV of France did nothing to help his friend James II
James was squashed when many of his senior advisors and generals abandoned him for
James ran away to France
William and Mary were crowned jointly as King and Queen by Parliament – for the first time, it
was parliament that legitimized their rule as opposed to a church.
The Declaration of Bill of Rights 1689
Asserted the rights and responsibilities of Parliament
Many principals such as freedom of speech, bearing of arms, and jury would later appear in USA
Also, created an environment of religious liberty.