Sunday, March 12, 2006

Queen Anne: 9 The Succession

In September the Tories were rewarded for the peace by a general election victory. But as the issue of the succession became more dominant, they divided among themselves between Hanover Tories and Pretender’s Tories. But the Pretender’s refusal to convert to Anglicanism made the situation very difficult for the Jacobite Tories.

On 23 May 1714 Sophia died aged 84. On 27 July Anne dismissed Oxford and sided with his Tory rival Viscount Bolingbroke. On 30 July she fell seriously ill. Her Privy Council saw to it that the ports were closed; the arms and horses of Catholics were ordered to be seized; troops moved towards London; messages were sent to Hanover requesting the Elector to come quickly, and a naval escort was despatched for his safe conduct. On 1 August Anne died. George I was immediately proclaimed.

The Stuart dynasty was over.