History Group – 27 September 2016 Meeting Notes

27th September 2016 Meeting Notes 

Subject: James II and his descendants

We met for the second time as a discussion group without a speaker to introduce it. The attendance was 7, including a new member, Janet Adams.

Our subject was James II and his descendants.  James came to the throne upon the death of his brother Charles II, leaving no legitimate children. James had two daughters who had been brought up as Protestants but after their mother's death James, who had converted to Roman Catholicism married an Italian noblewoman, a Catholic. The Duke of Monmouth, an illegitimate son of Charles II, raised an unsuccessful rebellion against James. Sandy Warren spoke at length about  Judge Jeffries, who lived for some time in Chalfont St Peter, and the part he played after the defeat of the Duke of Monmouth who was executed together with hundreds of his followers.


James' new Queen had a son in 1685, who could be expected to become a Catholic King of England. There was considerable unrest, and members of the English aristocracy invited William of Orange, who had married James' elder daughter Mary, to invade England, which he did. James threw the Great Seal of England into the Thames, but then fled, as did Jeffries.   After William's army had moved, unopposed, to London it was agreed by Parliament that he and Mary would rule jointly as King and Queen of England.

James invaded Ireland with an army provided by Louis XIV of France but was defeated by William III at the Battle of the  Boyne. An attempted invasion by his son, the Old Pretender after George I's accession in 1715 was abortive. The landing in the West of Scotland by his grandson Bonny Prince Charlie in 1745 was supported only by the Catholic  Highlanders and, although after minor skirmishes he entered Edinburgh in style and crossed into England he gained no significant number of recruits and, after turning back at Derby, was finally defeated at Culloden by the Duke of Cumberland's army of English, Scottish and Hanoverian troops, dying ignominiously in 1789.

You can find out more about the Battle of Culloden here:

There are plenty of websites with excellent articles about Culloden so go to any search engine and type in 'Culloden' and it will find the 'sites that may be of interest to you.

The link takes you a short film about the Battle of Culloden Moor.

The link will take you to https:youtube.com website. You may see an advert popping up…just click the 'x' to make it go away. You will find other videos on their website about Culloden.