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Killg Eng: Strug for Amer In > 6. What about Old King George?

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message 1: by Carol (new)

Carol  Jones-Campbell (cajonesdoa) | 690 comments Mod
6. What is your take on Old King George?


message 2: by Carol (new)

Carol  Jones-Campbell (cajonesdoa) | 690 comments Mod
George III (George William Frederick; 4 June 1738[c] – 29 January 1820) was King of Great Britain and King of Ireland from 25 October 1760 until the union of the two countries on 1 January 1801, after which he was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland until his death. He was concurrently Duke and prince-elector of Brunswick-Lüneburg ("Hanover") in the Holy Roman Empire before becoming King of Hanover on 12 October 1814. He was the third British monarch of the House of Hanover, but unlike his two predecessors, he was born in England, spoke English as his first language, and never visited Hanover.

His life and with it his reign, which were longer than those of any of his predecessors, were marked by a series of military conflicts involving his kingdoms, much of the rest of Europe, and places farther afield in Africa, the Americas and Asia. Early in his reign, Great Britain defeated France in the Seven Years' War, becoming the dominant European power in North America and India. However, many of Britain's American colonies were soon lost in the American War of Independence. Further wars against revolutionary and Napoleonic France from 1793 concluded in the defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

In the later part of his life, George III had recurrent, and eventually permanent, mental illness. Although it has since been suggested that he had the blood disease porphyria, the cause of his illness remains unknown. After a final relapse in 1810, a regency was established, and George III's eldest son, George, Prince of Wales, ruled as Prince Regent. On George III's death, the Prince Regent succeeded his father as George IV
Historical analysis of George III's life has gone through a "kaleidoscope of changing views" that have depended heavily on the prejudices of his biographers and the sources available to them. Until it was reassessed in the second half of the 20th century, his reputation in the United States was one of a tyrant; and in Britain he became "the scapegoat for the failure of imperialism.
George, in his accession speech to Parliament, proclaimed: "Born and educated in this country, I glory in the name of Britain."[23] He inserted this phrase into the speech, written by Lord Hardwicke, to demonstrate his desire to distance himself from his German forebears, who were perceived as caring more for Hanover than for Britain.[24]

Although his accession was at first welcomed by politicians of all parties,[e] the first years of his reign were marked by political instability, largely generated as a result of disagreements over the Seven Years' War.[26] George was also perceived as favouring Tory ministers, which led to his denunciation by the Whigs as an autocrat.[1] On his accession, the Crown lands produced relatively little income; most revenue was generated through taxes and excise duties. George surrendered the Crown Estate to Parliamentary control in return for a civil list annuity for the support of his household and the expenses of civil government.[27] Claims that he used the income to reward supporters with bribes and gifts[28] are disputed by historians who say such claims "rest on nothing but falsehoods put out by disgruntled opposition".[29] Debts amounting to over £3 million over the course of George's reign were paid by Parliament, and the civil list annuity was increased from time to time.[30] He aided the Royal Academy of Arts with large grants from his private funds,[31] and may have donated more than half of his personal income to charity.[32] Of his art collection, the two most notable purchases are Johannes Vermeer's Lady at the Virginals and a set of Canalettos, but it is as a collector of books that he is best remembered.[33] The King's Library was open and available to scholars and was the foundation of a new national library.[34]

Quarter-length portrait in oils of a clean-shaven young George in profile wearing a red suit, the Garter star, a blue sash, and a powdered wig. He has a receding chin and his forehead slopes away from the bridge of his nose making his head look round in shape.
George III by Allan Ramsay, 1762
In May 1762, the incumbent Whig government of the Duke of Newcastle was replaced with one led by the Scottish Tory Lord Bute. Bute's opponents worked against him by spreading the calumny that he was having an affair with the King's mother, and by exploiting anti-Scottish prejudices amongst the English. John Wilkes, a member of parliament, published The North Briton, which was both inflammatory and defamatory in its condemnation of Bute and the government. Wilkes was eventually arrested for seditious libel but he fled to France to escape punishment; he was expelled from the House of Commons, and found guilty in absentia of blasphemy and libel.[36] In 1763, after concluding the Peace of Paris which ended the war, Lord Bute resigned, allowing the Whigs under George Grenville to return to power.

Later that year, the Royal Proclamation of 1763 placed a limit upon the westward expansion of the American colonies. The Proclamation aimed to divert colonial expansion to the north (to Nova Scotia) and to the south (Florida). The Proclamation Line did not bother the majority of settled farmers, but it was unpopular with a vocal minority and ultimately contributed to conflict between the colonists and the British government. With the American colonists generally unburdened by British taxes, the government thought it appropriate for them to pay towards the defence of the colonies against native uprisings and the possibility of French incursions.[f] The central issue for the colonists was not the amount of taxes but whether Parliament could levy a tax without American approval, for there were no American seats in Parliament.The Americans protested that like all Englishmen they had rights to "no taxation without representation". In 1765, Grenville introduced the Stamp Act, which levied a stamp duty on every document in the British colonies in North America. Since newspapers were printed on stamped paper, those most affected by the introduction of the duty were the most effective at producing propaganda opposing the tax. Meanwhile, the King had become exasperated at Grenville's attempts to reduce the King's prerogatives, and tried, unsuccessfully, to persuade William Pitt the Elder to accept the office of Prime Minister After a brief illness, which may have presaged his illnesses to come, George settled on Lord Rockingham to form a ministry, and dismissed Grenville.


message 3: by Cindy (new)

Cindy | 522 comments I went to "Hamilton" a couple of weeks ago and it was fantastic! It will forever influence my views of most of these people, including King George. I'll never think of him without "You'll Be Back" stuck in my head. If you aren't familiar with this song - go to YouTube and listen. I think it brilliantly portrays him as selfish, egocentric, and slightly unbalanced, which is probably pretty accurate.


message 4: by Chelsea (new)

Chelsea | 562 comments I did not know about his mental illness at all, and found that really fascinating (and from arsenic in his wig even!). I kind of felt bad for the guy, but he would not relent until parliament finally all turned against him and practically made him drop the colonies.


message 5: by Heather (new)

Heather (shortblondreader) | 19 comments He had his challenges for sure and it's interesting how many political leaders had mental illnesses that we're now finding out about. It was not an easy time to be alive and he was in a difficult spot. Those English King's were pretty tough and enjoyed power from what I can tell.


message 6: by Barb (new)

Barb (deckerbunch) | 227 comments I really didn't know that much about King George, although as Cindy said, his role in "Hamilton," is certainly in line with reality. (I haven't seen Hamilton yet, but I've listened to the soundtrack over and over.) That song really is catchy!


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