Aolib.comFragment of Photochrom print of the front of Neuschwanstein Castle, Bavaria, Germany (ca. 1897)

A History of the Four Georges, Volume I »


By Justin McCarthy

event as that, and most assuredly if men like Bolingbroke had been in

power, it may be taken for granted that the Queen would have preferred

her own brother, a Stuart, to the Electoral Prince of Hanover. “What

the consequence might have been, if the Queen had survived,“ says

Somerville, “is merely a matter of conjecture; but we may pronounce, with some degree of assurance, that the Protestant interest

would have been exposed to more certain and to more imminent dangers

than ever had threatened it before at any period since the revolution.

This seems a reasonable and just assertion. If Anne had lived much

longer, it is possible that England might have seen a James the Third.

CHAPTER II.

PARTIES AND LEADERS.

[Sidenote: 1714–Whig and Tory]

All the closing months of Queen Anne’s reign were occupied by Whigs and

Tories, and indeed by Anne herself as well, in the invention and

conduct of intrigues about the succession. The Queen herself, with the

grave opening before her, kept her fading eyes turned, not to the world

she was about to enter, but to the world she was about to leave. She

was thinking much more about the future of her throne than about her

own soul and future state. The Whigs were quite ready to maintain the

Hanoverian succession by force. They did not expect to be able to

carry matters easily, and they were ready to encounter a civil war.

Their belief seems to have been that they and not their opponents would

have to strike the blow, and they had already summoned the Duke of

Marlborough from his retirement in Flanders to take the lead in their

movement. Having Marlborough, they knew that they would have the army.

On the other hand, if Bolingbroke and the Tories really had any actual

hope of a restoration of the Stuarts, it is certain that up to the last

moment they had made no substantial preparations to accomplish their

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