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adored his wife, Sarah Jennings, Duchess of Marlborough, to whom he wrote that he would rather face twenty thousand men than meet a frown on her brow. She and Queen Anne were for years the most intimate of friends, corresponding almost daily under the names of "Mrs. Morley," for the Queen, and "Mrs. Freeman," for the duchess. The latter was mentally the superior of the Queen, and for a long time dominated her. The imperious temper of the duchess was resistless. Her influence had much to do with the elevation of her husband, her social victories being as marked in their way as his military ones.

But the time came when even the meek, stupid Anne rebelled at the domineering manner and methods of her Mistress of the Robes. They quarrelled, and she was superseded by a Mrs. Masham, who speedily gained as complete control of the Queen as had been held by the duchess. She brought about the abandonment of the Whig policy, made her cousin the real prime minister, and secured the recall of Marlborough in disgrace. By and by the Whigs were driven from power, and the Duchess of Marlborough, in her spite at being forced to give up her apartments in the palace of St. James, wrenched off the locks of the doors and smashed the marble mantels.

The Tories, or peace party, having triumphed, negotiations were opened for bringing the tiresome war to a close. This was finally accomplished in 1713, at the city of Utrecht, in Holland, where the treaty signed by all the nations interested bound Louis XIV. to acknowledge the Protestant succession in England, to expel the Pretender from France, to renounce the union of the crowns of France and Spain, and to surrender to England all claims to Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, and the immense territory long known as the Hudson Bay Company's Possessions. On the part of Spain she agreed to yield her

Netherlands to Austria and to allow the Dutch a line of forts to defend their frontier against France, while England was to have a monopoly of the slave trade for thirty-three years with the Spanish American colonies.

From the time of James I. England and Scotland had been governed by one sovereign, but each country had its own parliament and religion. In 1707 the countries were united under the name of Great Britain, and the national flag, which had been ordered by James I., but which had fallen into disuse, was appointed for the English, Scotch, and Welsh. Henceforward Scotland was represented in the House of Lords by sixteen peers (still retained), and in the House of Commons by forty-five (now seventy-two members). In 1801, when Ireland was joined to Great Britain, the red cross of St. Patrick was added to the flag, which, as you know, united the cross of St. George, the patron saint of England, and St. Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland. The name "Jack," as applied to the flag, comes from Jacques, French for James.

A violent quarrel between Oxford and Bolingbroke, bitter rivals, in the

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England Society under Queen Anne


presence of Queen Anne, hastened her death, which took place from apoplexy a week later, August 1, 1714. Seventeen children had been born to her, but all had died young. As prescribed by the Act of Settlement, the crown went to George, Elector of Hanover, a Protestant descendant of James I. of England. Thus in the death of Anne the Stuart line came to an end and that of the Brunswick line began.

During these days England and Holland strove with each other for the import and export trade, and Parliament passed many navigation laws to aid her merchants in that direction. An enormous impetus was given to English commercial enterprise by the formation of the East India and the South Sea Companies, while on the other side of the Atlantic Virginia devoted so much energy to the cultivation of tobacco that it reached lucrative proportions.

There was little improvement in the methods of travel. Good roads were unknown, and it required a small fortune to ride any considerable distance in the lumbering coaches. The expense of taking goods to market was so great that hundreds of farmers allowed their crops to rot in the ground. Now and then you might see a coach plunging and swaying through the narrow London streets, but the favorite vehicle was the sedan chair, which was carried on poles by two men. London, although rebuilt by the great Sir Christopher Wren, was notable for its narrow, filthy streets, its lack of sidewalks, and almost entire absence of lighting.

The English have always been great drinkers of ale and beer, but about the middle of the seventeenth century they began using coffee, and the coffee houses were favorite resorts for gossip. It is a strange fact that London had no police worthy of the name as late as the reign of Queen Anne. Drunken ruffians staggered through the streets, shouting and insulting all whom they met, while some of aristocratic birth had fine sport in kicking men out of their sedan chairs, making them dance till they could not stand, and in rolling screaming women down hill in barrels. The streets were infested with highwaymen, and a man who wanted to set a duel going could do it inside of five minutes.

Some of the laws were ferocious, hanging being the penalty for offences which would be punished with a slight fine in these days. It was a common sight to see men and women publicly whipped through the streets. A person unfortunate enough to fall into debt was thrust into an unspeakably filthy prison and left to rot and die, while his wife and children starved. Imprisonment for debt was one of the foulest blots upon the English Government during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It was the profound pity roused in the heart of General Oglethorpe for the awful sufferings of English debtors that led him to found a colony for them in Georgia.

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Chapter CXIV



EORGE I. (1714-1727) was an "odd stick."

He was a little, stupid Dutchman, fifty-four years old, fond of his long pipe and beer. He did not know and did not wish to know anything about England, honestly preferring to live a country gentleman's life amid his homely German court. But he was persuaded that he would have to make a move; so, after waiting for six weeks, he took an extra swig from his mug, grunted, rose to his feet, and leaving his wife shut up in a castle, started with his eldest son for Greenwich. The loyal English people received him for the great argument he represented: Protestantism, with religious and civic liberty. But it was impossible for any one to feel enthusiasm over the coarse, awkward fellow, who had to be taught a few Latin sentences to repeat by rote at his coronation.

Unable to speak a word of English, and having no English friends, this King instituted much of the form of government that is used to-day. Instead of selecting a Cabinet from his supporters, as did his predecessors, he chose one man for Prime Minister, who picked the Cabinet from his own party. Thus, since Anne, no sovereign has been present at a Cabinet council or refused assent to any Act of Parliament. One may picture this dull but genial monarch with plenty of time for eating, drinking, and card-playing, while he laughed at the caricatures of the English people, cut from papers by the German court ladies for his amusement.

The King understood that the Whigs were his friends, so he gave them the

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