James II (king of England, Scotland, and Ireland)

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

James II (king of England, Scotland, and Ireland)

James II, 1633–1701, king of England, Scotland, and Ireland (1685–88); second son of Charles I, brother and successor of Charles II.

Early Life

As the young duke of York James was surrendered (1646) to the parliamentary forces at the end of the first civil war, but he escaped (1648) to the Continent and served in the French (1652–55) and Spanish (1658) armies. At the Restoration (1660) he returned to England, married Anne Hyde, daughter of the 1st earl of Clarendon, and was made lord high admiral, in which capacity he served (1665, 1672) in the Dutch Wars. Charles II granted him sweeping proprietary rights in America, and the captured Dutch settlement New Amsterdam was renamed (1664) New York in his honor.

Effect of James's Catholicism

James was converted to Roman Catholicism probably in 1668—a step that was to have grave consequences. After his resignation (1673) as admiral because of the Test Act and his marriage (1673) to the staunchly Catholic Mary of Modena (his first wife having died in 1671), he became increasingly unpopular in England. James consented to the marriage (1677) of his daughter Mary (later Mary II) to the Protestant prince of Orange (later William III), and the couple became the heirs presumptive, after James, to the English throne. In the anti-Catholic hysteria that accompanied the false accusations of Titus Oates about the Popish Plot (1678), efforts were made by the so-called Whigs to exclude James from the succession. Charles stood by his brother, preventing passage of the Exclusion Bill, but sent him out of the country. After a period as commissioner (1680–82) in Scotland, James returned to England, and particularly after the Rye House Plot (1683) his fortunes rose.

Reign

When Charles died in 1685, James succeeded peacefully to the throne. An uprising led by the duke of Monmouth was crushed (1685), but the severe reprisals of the Bloody Assizes under Baron Jeffreys of Wem added to the animosity toward James. The king favored autocratic methods, proroguing the hostile Parliament (1685), reviving the old ecclesiastical court of high commission, and interfering with the courts and with local town and county government. His principal object was to fill positions of authority and influence with Roman Catholics, and to this end he issued two declarations of indulgence (1687, 1688), suspending the laws against Catholics and dissenters.

Defiance and dislike of him grew, fed by the trial (1688) of seven bishops who had refused to read his second declaration. The birth of a son, who would have succeeded instead of the Protestant William and Mary, helped to bring the opposition to a head. William of Orange was invited to England by Whig and Tory leaders. The unpopular, autocratic, and Catholic king had few loyal followers and was unable to defend himself. He fled, was captured, and was allowed to escape to France, and William and Mary took the throne. The so-called Glorious Revolution had succeeded.

Attempts at Restoration

James made an effort to restore himself by landing in Ireland in 1689 and leading his many Catholic followers there, but the effort failed at the battle of the Boyne (1690). Other projects for restoration failed, and James's supporter, Louis XIV, recognized William III in the Treaty of Ryswick (1697). The cause of James's son and grandson was upheld later by the Jacobites long after James had died in inglorious exile.

Bibliography

See his early memoirs (tr. 1962); biographies by H. Belloc (1928, repr. 1971), F. G. Turner (1948), and V. Buranelli (1962); D. Ogg, England in the Reigns of James II and William III (1955, repr. 1969); J. P. Kenyon, The Stuarts (1958, repr. 1966); J. Childs, The Army, James II and the Glorious Revolution (1981).

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

James II (king of England, Scotland, and Ireland)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.