Act of Settlement

(323 words)

Historical Context Note

The protestant succession of the British monarchy having been legally asserted in the Bill of Rights of 1689 (q.v.) which had settled the succession on Mary's heirs, then on her sister Anne's, then on William's, provided they were protestants. Mary died childless in 1694; and in 1700 Anne lost her only surviving child and William was ill. James II, who had been ousted by William in 1688, had set up a court in exile in France and when he dies in 1701 his son, James Francis Edward Stuart, had been recognised as king of England by Louis XIV so there was a palpable threat of yet more political strife if the matter of the succession were not secured. [See our entry on The War o…

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Clark, Robert. "Act of Settlement". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 23 January 2004
[, accessed 28 September 2016.]