Monday, May 3, 2010

Hammering the Scots Again & Stuff

Soon public opinion began to frown at the Dowager Princess of Wales.  Freddy had been BFFs w/ John Stuart, Earl of Bute. 

John Stuart, Earl of Bute

Bute decided to take an interest in the education of Freddy's fatherless lads & Augusta engaged him as their tutor.  It wasn't long b4 rumors were swirling that Augusta & John were knocking butes LOL I slay me.  Bute was married & had 9 brats of his own, but he was spending an inordinate amt of time at Leicester House just the same.  The Hanoverian Hoochies got wind of it & pretty soon twas in all the tabloids.  They insisted they weren't, but no one believed em.  Augusta sighed & eventually withdrew to Kew, where she was responsible for starting the ginormous tourist attraction gardens there.

Kew Palace

Meanwhile, George II was doing a lot more than just glaring at the late unlamented Freddy.  He granted a charter to James Oglethorpe to start the colony of Georgia so that the Brits would have some place for transportation.  This is when the jails got really full & they picked the peeps w/ the pettiest offenses for a free 1-way boat ride to the colonies to make room for the more felonious offenders.

Then George got into the War of Jenkins' Ear.  This silly name for a war came about when a British merchant ship captain, Robert Jenkins, came to Parliament to show off his severed ear, which had been removed by Spanish privateering peeps boarding his ship. 

At the same time the Holy Roman Emperor demised leaving no male heirs & peeps were all um NO Salic Law when his daughter Maria Theresa said MY THRONE.  MT sighed & said FINE I get Daddy's other goodies & my DH Francis can be the emperor then.  This was met w/ more um NOs b/c there were plenty of other peeps who wanted the job & the territory.

Empress Maria Theresa

The War of Jenkins' Ear soon merged into the War of the Austrian Succession.  In the colonies it was called King George's War.  This pitted Great Britain & Austria against Spain, France, & Prussia & dragged on for 8 yrs.  Frederick the Great of Prussia started the whole thing by invading the Austrian province of Silesia.

Frederick II "the Great" of Prussia

There was lots of invading everywhere across Europe & mini-wars in it in Sweden, Russia, Silesia, & Italy, too.  George II became the last English king to lead troops into battle & he trounced the Frenchies at the battle of Dettingen.

George II at the Battle of Dettingen

Finally this got to be tedious after so many yrs & the war ended w/ the Treaty of Aix-la-Chappelle, where Maria Theresa got exactly what she wanted.  Imagine how peaceful it would've been if the rest of the peeps had just said OK at the start.

In the midst of all this continental chaos, the Stuarts decided it might be a good time to give it another go.  This was known as the '45 b/c this Jacobite rising occurred in 1745 & natch assisted by the Scots.  Fav son Billy was now an Army peep & his role in putting down the rebellion earned him the nickname of "Butcher Cumberland". 

William, Duke of Cumberland

The Old Pretender stayed in Italy whilst Bonnie Prince Charlie went off to Scotland to get Daddy his throne.

Bonnie Prince Charlie, off to war

At 1st it seemed like they might indeed have a shot at it, as the Jacobite forces trounced the British at the battle of Prestonpans.  Then Bonnie Prince Charlie had the brill notion of chasing em back across the border.  The Jacobites got as far as Derbyshire w/ little resistance, but no rallying of support, either.  George II heard what was going on & sent peeps back from France under Billy's command to deal w/ this nuisance.  BPC wanted to press on to London, but his peeps were um NO there's way more of them than there are of us, & turned round to head back over the wall.

Billy followed not by land but by sea.  Whilst the Jacobites were wearing themselves out marching all the way back to Glasgow, he took a leisurely sail to Aberdeen w/ a mix of British & Hessian troops.  Hessians came from the Hanoverian province of Hesse FYI.  B4 he got there, the Jacobites won another victory at the battle of Falkirk & were chuffed w/ themselves.  But then Billy disembarked & began pushing em north.  Most of the Jacobites were Highlanders & volunteers, not trained army peeps.  There were, as always, some Frenchies in the mix to honor the Auld Alliance, in the form of the Royal Scots Regiment AKA en francais Royale Ecossois.  They done good to do all that marching & win 2 battles, considering the shoddy, old-fashioned weaponry they had to use. 

In this midst of all this shoving the Jacobites back to Inverness, Billy celebrated his 25th BD by passing out rations of brandy to his peeps.  BPC was all come over unnecessary when his spies got wind of this & was all for a surprise attack at night when all Cumberland's forces would be hammered.  The Jacobite commander, Lord George Murray, was grinding his teeth at BPCs total lack of military common sense & said um NO the ground's too marshy round here, forget about it.  BPC pouted & sulked.  He was like that.  Pity Murray didn't let him go on to London & get a Tower Fun Pass.

Lord George Murray, Scots Jacobite commander

The next morn, sans hangovers apparently, Billy's forces were on the move & caught up w/ the Jacobites at Culloden Moor.  Murray didn't like the ground there, either, & urged BPC to keep moving.  BPC was all pffft we can take em MAKE IT HAPPEN.

Billy opened by bombarding the Jacobites w/ artillery rounds OW.  BPC kinda stood there w/ his mouth open for a while & peeps nudged him & said well?  Now what?  So BPC gave the order to charge the British lines instead of going RUN AWAY!  RUN AWAY! & twas a disaster from the word CHARGE!

The Battle of Culloden

Murray was right about the soggy ground, an impediment for cavlary & foot soldiers alike, plus Billy's troops had the advantage of gravity due to the slope of the moor.  The MacDonalds were insulted at the position they were put in & refused to play.  The Royale Ecossois got caught up in "friendly fire" from the Campbells.  Twas a mess & pretty soon the Jacobites were surrounded on 3 sides.  The head of BPCs personal guard was all RUN AWAY!  RUN AWAY! & BPC didn't need to be told twice, galloping off.  

No quarter was given to the fleeing Highlanders, who were hemmed in by the British & massacred.  Tis said (& don't you Outlander lovers hurt Scarlet, now) that Fraser of Lovat, whose clan had been holding a bridge over the river Ness that was the Highlanders' sole means of getting the hell outta there, turned his coat at the last second.  Not only were the Highlanders chased until they dropped, Billy sent more troops into the Highlands on punitive expeditions to wipe out that nest of Jacobites once & for all.

After Culloden
British soldiers hunting down Scots rebels

Houses were burned, livestock taken, kidlets left to starve, women raped, & any man bearing arms kilt on sight.  Billy said twas b/c he'd found orders from Murray stating no quarter was to be given to the government troops, but it turned out he just made that up b/c such a paper has never been seen.  The jails in Inverness were full to overflowing & peeps were taken to hulks on the Thames to await trial & execution.  Hulks were old ships that were made into prisons when there were too many peeps for the regular prisons to hold.  Tower Hill got lots of traffic, esp as Billy insisted there should be no pardons for the rebellious Scots nobles he'd coralled, & nigh on 1,000 peeps were transported to the colonies.  By Act of Parliament, wearing of clan tartans was banned under penalty of death, & any lord or clan chief who'd supported the rebellion had their lands & properties seized & sold by the crown to Englishmen.  All Highlanders had to swear oaths of allegiance to George II or else.  The Hanoverians were going to make damn sure there was never a rising in Scotland in support of those pesky Stuarts again.

Meanwhile, BPC had to hie all the way to the Hebrides & there were STILL peeps after him.  This is where the legend of Flora MacDonald comes from.

Flora MacDonald

She lived on the isle of Skye & supposedly hid BPC & helped him escape by dressing him up as a woman & passing him off as her Irish maid, Betty Burke, so that he could island-hop & eventually get away on a waiting Frenchie frigate.  Flora got a nice Tower Fun Pass for it but was eventually released, married, & went to go live in North Carolina (mayhap next door to Jamie & Claire?).

The Scots wanted naught to to w/ the Stuart cause ever again, what w/ the debacle of Culloden & its aftermath.  There was never another rising to restore them to the throne.  The 25 yo BPC did get a nice Scots GF out of it & lived w/ Clementina Walkinshaw in exile for yonks.

Clementina Walkinshaw

They had a bastard daughter, Charlotte, who grew up to be a notorious slut & had a few bastards of her own.

Charlotte Stuart

BPC offered to convert to the Anglican faith if it would help him get the throne back, but peeps were all meh we don't care, Charlie, get over it already, ain't happening.

Bonnie Prince Charlie

George II was quite fussed w/ Billy's grand military success in really trouncing those irksome Scots 4ever & went round calling him his "Sweet William".  There were also some nice inroads being made in India from that jumping-off spot of Bombay that had come as Catherine of Braganza's dowry, w/ lots of coin to be made there.  George had everyone scratching their heads going "What day is it?" when he decided to join in w/ the rest of Europe & switch from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian one.  This meant peeps lost 11dy6 (meh really 11) days in September when the change took place.  The English, tho they celebrated New Year's Day on January 1st, technically still had it in their calendar as Lady Day, which was March 25th & the Feast of the Annunciation.  Lady Day was when the peasants got their yrly wages & such from the landowners.  Twas confusing for a while & then peeps got used to it.

Then another war started, this one in the colonies.  The Ohio Territory stood btwn the 13 British colonies & New France, & natch they both wanted it.  In GB it was called the Seven Yrs' War but in the colonies twas known as the French & Indian War.  This is b/c the British had a nice alliance w/ the Iroquois Confederation against the Frenchies.  The Frenchies took Minorca away from the Brits in Europe, but then there was a smashing British victory at Quebec & things were looking peachy for trouncing those annoying Frenchies in the New World.

Alas, George II would never get to see how it all came out.  He went to take his morning constitutional one fine October day & pitched forward off the terlet w/ a loud crash.  His valet stuck his head in to find the king in a most undignified position on the floor.  George gasped out that he wanted his fav daughter Amelia as the valet dragged him into bed, & then abruptly demised.  Twas from an aortic anyeurism (that thing what kilt John Ritter).  Those ain't fun b/c there are 4 layers to one's aortic wall & if all 4 of em rupture at the same time, one can bleed out in like 10 secs flat.  Even 2 or 3 woulda kilt him eventually in those days b4 they had open-heart surgicals to fix such.  Just farting coulda blown it if it was ready to rip.  He got plonked into his puzzle box w/ Caroline at Westminster Abbey.

There was no need for the new Queen Mum, Augusta, to have a nice regency, as George II had demised at the age of 76 & so at age 22 his grandson George was old enough to be king sans Mummy's help....

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