William and Mary England King and Queen Facts, Reign & the Glorious Revolution

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William and Mary Facts

King William III (William of Orange ) was Dutch and married to James II protestant daughter Mary.

After James II's son was born to his Catholic wife and it was obvious the child would be raised Catholic, English Lords sent for William of Orange to deliver England from the tyranny of James II.

King William's landing William III was seen as the deliverer. Because William III was not an Englishman and had not come to the throne through inheritance his loyalty to the English would always be questionable.

William and Mary accepted their crowns at Whitehall February 1689. William and Mary reigned jointly - recognized as joint monarchs but forced to accept parliamentary limitations on their sovereignty

William insisted on equal status with Mary based on military conquest and his own blood claim as Charles I grandson

William had a cold manner about his personality was considered by some as contemptuous. The English could not fully trust him nor could William fully trust the English who had threw one King out in favor of a foreigner. However, the people felt he had delivered them from the evil tyranny of Catholics.

William did not want his subjects as slaves he felt they should have some degree of freedom.

Mary died first, then William. They were preceded by Queen Anne.

Significant Events of William and Mary's Reign

  1. Statutes were enacted by Parliament restricting Royal Authority
  2. Armies raised had to have Parliament's consent where once it was Royal claim to maintain a standing army.
  3. Declaration of Rights translated into law as the Bill of rights of 1689 - very similar to the American Declaration of Independence
  4. The Scotts establish a colony at the Isthmus of Panama known as Darien. London financiers refused to invest so the Scotts took it over as a national enterprise. The English refused to give quarter to any ship coming or going from Darien. The colony was established on Spanish territory so William told the Spanish that the Scots were defying their king. The colony failed due to tropical diseases and insufficient supplies. When the Scots left in 1699, 3 out of 4 ships sunk. The Scots blamed the English for the fiasco.
  5. Act of Tolerations in 1689 - William was a Calvinist and Mary an Anglican, William insisted that the promise of religious toleration given to lure him to England be honored. Religious tolerance was given to all but Unitarians and Catholics

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