Jacobitism (/ˈdʒækəbaɪˌtɪzəm/ JAK-ə-bye-tiz-əm;[1][2] Scottish Gaelic: Seumasachas [ˈʃeːməs̪əxəs̪], Irish: Seacaibíteachas, Séamusachas) was the name of the political movement in Great Britain and Ireland that aimed to restore the House of Stuart to the thrones of England, Scotland, and Ireland. The movement was named after Jacobus, the Latin form of James.

After James II and VII went into exile after the 1688 Glorious Revolution, the English Parliament argued he had 'abandoned' the throne of England and offered it to his Protestant daughter Mary II and son-in-law and nephew William III as joint monarchs.[3] In Scotland, the Convention did the same but claimed he had 'forfeited' the throne of Scotland by his actions, listed in the Articles of Grievances.[4]

This was a fundamental change capturing a key ideological difference between Jacobites and their opponents; if Parliament could decide James had forfeited his throne, monarchs derived their legitimacy from Parliament, not God, ending the principle of divine right of kings. However, Jacobitism was a complex mix of ideas; in Ireland, it was associated with tolerance for Catholicism and the reversal of the land settlements of the 17th century. After 1707, many Scottish Jacobites wanted to undo the Acts of Union that created Great Britain but opposed the idea of divine right.

Outside Ireland, Jacobitism was strongest in the Scottish Highlands and Aberdeenshire, traditional Catholic areas in Northern England, primarily Northumberland, County Durham and Lancashire), plus parts of Wales and South-West England. The emblem of the Jacobites is the White Cockade. White Rose Day is celebrated on 10 June, the anniversary of the birth of the Old Pretender in 1688.

In addition to the 1689–1691 Williamite War in Ireland, there were a number of Jacobite revolts in Scotland and England between 1689 and 1746, plus many unsuccessful plots. The collapse of the 1745 Rising ended Jacobitism as a serious political movement.

Jacobite movement
Participant in
The Jacobite 1745 flag
The Jacobite 1745 flag
HeadquartersSeveral headquarters:
Area of operationsKingdom of Great Britain and Kingdom of Ireland
Allies Kingdom of France
Opponent(s)Royal Standard of the United Kingdom (1714–1801).svg House of Hanover

Political background

The first Stuart to be monarch of both Scotland and England was James VI and I, who claimed his authority was divinely inspired, a concept known as divine right. He considered his decisions were not subject to 'interference' by either Parliament or the Church, a political view that would remain remarkably consistent among his Stuart successors.[5]

True Law of Free Monarchies
'The True Law of Free Monarchies;' James I's political tract formed the basis of Stuart ideology

When James became King of England in 1603, a unified Church of Scotland and England governed by bishops was the first step in his vision of a centralised, Unionist state.[6] While both churches were nominally Episcopalian, in reality they were very different in governance and doctrine; Scottish bishops presided over Presbyterian structures and were doctrinal Calvinists who viewed many Church of England practices as little better than Catholicism.[7]

Attempts by James's son Charles I to impose common practices ultimately led to the 1639-1651 Wars of the Three Kingdoms, the execution of Charles in 1649 and the incorporation of Scotland into the English Commonwealth. After the Restoration of Charles II in 1660, political and religious conflict continued; in Scotland, this was largely expressed through conflict over governance and control of the kirk and in England, the role of Parliament.

James II by Peter Lely
James II and VII; despite inheriting the throne with substantial support in 1685, by 1688 James had alienated the vast majority.

In Ireland, the key issues were land rights and tolerance for the Catholic majority; after the Flight of the Earls in 1607, their lands were confiscated and settled by Scottish and English Protestants, resulting in the Plantation of Ulster. Retrieving these was a primary aim of the 1641 Irish Rebellion but after the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland, land held by Irish Catholics had fallen from 60% in 1641 to 9%. Only a small minority of large Catholic landowners benefitted from the 1662 Act of Settlement passed after the Restoration.[8]

In addition to struggles over religion, the Stuarts strongly resisted the growing strength of Parliament; from 1629-1640, Charles I ruled without one. Louis XIV of France was the greatest exponent of Royal Absolutism in contemporary Europe, which meant many associated political absolutism with Catholicism. Charles II refused to call an English Parliament between 1681–1685, while in Ireland, only one session of Parliament was held between 1660 and 1689.

In 1685, Charles' Catholic brother became James II and VII, with considerable support in all three kingdoms; however, tolerance for his personal Catholicism did not extend to Catholicism in general. James' attempts to extend these measures to other Dissenters and his use of the Royal Prerogative to do so evoked memories of the religious and political divisions that led to the Civil Wars and were resisted by the Presbyterian Scots and his English Tory Anglican supporters.[9] However, his Catholic viceroy in Ireland, Richard Talbot, 1st Earl of Tyrconnell, began replacing Protestant office holders with Catholics, while also purging them from an expanded Royal Irish Army.

In June 1688, two events turned dissent into a crisis; the birth of James Francis Edward on 10 June created a Catholic heir, excluding James' Protestant daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange. Prosecuting the Seven Bishops seemed to go beyond tolerance for Catholicism and into an assault on the Episcopalian establishment; their acquittal on 30 June destroyed James' political authority.[10]

Queen Anne by John Closterman
The last Stuart monarch, Queen Anne ca 1702

In 1685, many feared civil war if James were bypassed; by 1688, anti-Catholic riots made it seem only his removal could prevent one.[11] Representatives from across the political class invited William to assume the English throne and he landed in Brixham on 5 November; James' army deserted him and he went into exile on 23 December.[12] Parliament offered the English throne to William and Mary in February 1689; a large majority agreed Mary should replace her father but William's demand he be made joint monarch and sole ruler if she died was only narrowly approved.[13]

A Scottish Convention was elected in March 1689 to agree a Settlement, with only a tiny minority of the 125 delegates loyal to James.[14] On 12 March, James began the War in Ireland; on 11 April, the Convention ended James' reign and William and Mary accepted the Scottish throne on 11 May.[15]

To win Irish support, James reluctantly conceded demands by the Patriot Parliament in May 1689 that he restore lands confiscated by Cromwell; these were declared void after his defeat in 1691 but the memory persisted.

James II died in exile in 1701 and when William died in 1702, his younger daughter Anne became the last Stuart monarch; in 1707, the Act of Union between England and Scotland completed the process begun by James I. Since neither Anne nor Mary had surviving children, the 1701 Act of Settlement ensured a Protestant successor by excluding Catholics from the English and Irish thrones, and that of Great Britain after the 1707 Act of Union. Anne's heir was the distantly related but Protestant Sophia of Hanover, not her Catholic half-brother James. Sophia died two months before Anne in August 1714; her son became George I and the pro-Hanoverian Whigs controlled government for the next 30 years.[16] In England, the exclusion of Tories from government after 1715 would become a major element in support for the exiled Stuarts.


While Jacobitism was closely linked with Catholicism from the outset, particularly in Ireland, in Britain Catholics were a small minority by 1689 and the bulk of Jacobite support came from other groups. Catholics formed about 75% of the population of Ireland. In England, however, not more than 2–3% of the population could have been "practising Catholics", though in the north of England, "at least one half of the population outside the towns were Catholic in some degree". By this definition, Catholics numbered 10–15% of the English population. Catholicism survived most strongly among the nobility, of whom 15–20% clung to the old faith.[17] In Scotland (excluding the Highlands and the Isles), it is estimated that about 2% of the population were Catholic.


The key demands of Irish Jacobitism remained consistent until the Stuart cause ended in the mid eighteenth century; these were religious toleration, legislative autonomy and land ownership. During the 1638–1651 Wars of the Three Kingdoms and the 1641 Irish Rebellion, much of Ireland was controlled by the Catholic Confederacy or Cónaidhm Chaitliceach na hÉireann, who offered their allegiance to Charles I.

However, Irish support for the Stuarts was primarily an alliance of convenience, rather than bonds of loyalty, since Charles failed to implement his 1628 promise allowing freedom of worship for Catholics and supported the 1642 Adventurers' Act penalising many supporters of the Confederacy. His Catholic son James was seen more favourably and when he became king in 1685, the Catholic Earl of Tyrconnell was appointed Lord Deputy of Ireland; he admitted Catholics into the army and militia and refused to enforce anti-Catholic penal laws.

This meant when James was exiled by the Glorious Revolution of 1688, Ireland was an obvious location to launch his campaign to retake his kingdoms, which was later known as the War in Ireland. The 1689 Dublin Parliament provided James financial support in return for removing restrictions on Catholic worship but the supremacy of the Protestant Church of Ireland was left intact, while James actively resisted legislation that reversed post-1651 land confiscations.[18][19] While active Protestant support was limited, as with the Church of England, many members of the Church of Ireland continued to back the Stuart right to the throne. Prominent Irish Non-Jurors included William Sheridan, Bishop of Kilmore and Ardagh and the Jacobite propagandist Charles Leslie.[20]

After James was defeated in 1691, all measures passed by the 1689 Parliament were annulled while many of his Catholic soldiers joined the Irish Brigade in the French army.


In England some support came from the Nonjuring Anglicans, which started with Church of England clergy who refused on principle to take the oath of allegiance to William and Mary while James still lived, and developed into an Episcopalian schism of the church with small congregations in all the English cities. In many respects, Jacobites perceived themselves as the heirs of the Royalists or Cavaliers of the English Civil War era, who had fought for James II's father Charles I and for the Established Church against the Parliamentarians, the latter standing for the primacy of Parliament and for religious dissent. Jacobite supporters displayed pictures of both Cavalier and Jacobite heroes in their homes.


In Lowland Scotland, the Catholics tended to come from the gentry and formed the most ideologically committed supporters, drawing on almost two centuries of subterfuge as a minority persecuted by the state and rallying enthusiastically to Jacobite armies as well as contributing financial support to the court in exile. Highland clans such as the MacDonnels/MacDonalds of Clanranald, Keppoch, Glengarry and Glencoe,[21] the Clan Chisolm[22] and the Ogilvys[23] were largely still Catholic.[24] Other clans, such as the powerful Camerons, were Episcopalian, and as staunch Jacobites as their allies, the Catholic MacDonalds. The clan chief who led his men at the Battle of Culloden, the 'Gentle Lochiel', survived to command the French Régiment d'Albanie, and died at Bergues in 1748.[25]

However, by 1745 Scots Catholics were a tiny minority, census figures as around 16,500 out of a total Scots population of over 1.5 million or under 1%.[26] By some estimates, Scottish Episcopalians provided over 50% of Jacobite recruits but while the modern labels of Episcopalian and Presbyterian imply doctrinal variations, this was not the case in 1745. The vast majority of Scots, whether Episcopalian or Presbyterian, were doctrinal Calvinists; differences primarily related to governance of the Church of Scotland or kirk, and the Nonjuring schism over swearing allegiance to the Hanoverians. Many Non-juring congregations were concentrated along the north-east coast, and many recruits came from this element of society.[27]

To the Gaelic-speaking Scottish Highland clans, to whom the supporters of Jacobitism were known as Seumasaich, the conflict was more about inter-clan politics than about religion, and a significant factor was resistance to the territorial ambitions of the (Presbyterian) Campbells of Argyll. There was a precedent for post-1689 Jacobitism during the period of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, when clans from the western Highlands had fought for James's father Charles I against the Campbells and the Covenanters. Another factor in Highland Jacobitism was James VII's sympathetic treatment of the Highland clans. Whereas previous monarchs since the late 16th century had been antagonistic to the Gaelic Highland way of life, James had worked sympathetically with the clan chieftains in the Commission for Pacifying the Highlands. Some Highland chieftains therefore viewed Jacobitism as a means of resisting hostile government intrusion into their territories. The significance of their support for the Stuarts was that the Highlands was the only part of Britain which still maintained private armies, in the form of clan levies. During the Jacobite risings, they provided the bulk of Jacobite manpower.

Opportunists and adventurers

Another source of Jacobite support came from those dissatisfied with political developments. Some Whigs, most obviously the Earl of Mar, reacted to political disappointments by joining the Jacobites, but while others were courted from 1692 onwards and indicated support, mostly this was just reinsurance in case the Jacobites came out on top.

The Tories were a more likely source of support given their commitment to church and king, but many were reluctant to trust the Church of England to a Catholic king. At times such as 1715–1722 when the Hanoverians appeared to be dismantling Anglican dominance and 1743–1745 when Whig dealings denied the Tories a parliamentary victory they would coalesce and turn to the Jacobites, but they were reluctant when it came to serious action. Nevertheless, this gave hopes that large numbers of Tories would support a Jacobite rising with a serious prospect of winning, particularly when helped by foreign intervention. The rise and fall of the earlier Tory alliance with the Jacobites forms a major part of the background for Sir Walter Scott's Bride of Lammermoor.

Other Jacobite recruits could be described as adventurers – desperate men who saw the cause as a solution to their (usually financial) problems. Although small in number and varying from unemployed weavers looking for excitement to impoverished gentry like William Boyd, 4th Earl of Kilmarnock who served Charles as a colonel and became a general after the Battle of Falkirk, they contributed significantly to the daring that brought the Jacobites a prospect of success in their campaigns. However, other such mercenaries often became spies and informers.

A number of pirates were among the opportunists who flocked to the Jacobite banner. Some gave their ships Jacobite names such as Queen Anne's Revenge or Royal James.[28] Others declared their support openly: Charles Vane drank “Damnation to King George”[29] while Thomas Cocklyn toasted the health of "King James the Third",[30] and John Russell threatened to shoot a prisoner for failing to recognize the Pretender.[31] While some pirates like John Norcross actively sought to serve James Stuart directly, many were offering only verbal support, using Jacobitism as an excuse to plunder English shipping, or were using Jacobite slogans in a general show of rebellion without actually working to advance Jacobite ideals.[32]


Jacobite ideology comprised four main tenets: The divine right of kings, the "accountability of Kings to God alone", inalienable hereditary right, and the "unequivocal scriptural injunction of non-resistance and passive obedience",[33] though these positions were not unique to the Jacobites. What distinguished Jacobites from Whigs was their adherence to 'right' as the basis for the law, whereas the Whigs held to the idea of 'possession' as the basis of the law. However, such distinctions became less clear over time, with an increase in the use of contract theory by some Jacobite writers during the reign of George I.[34]

Jacobites contended that James II had not been legally deprived of his throne,[35] and that the Convention Parliament and its successors were not legal. Scottish Jacobites resisted the Act of Union of 1707; while not recognising Parliamentary Great Britain, Jacobites recognised their monarchs as Kings of Great Britain.

The majority of Irish people supported James II due to his 1687 Declaration of Indulgence or, as it is also known, The Declaration for the Liberty of Conscience, which granted religious freedom to all denominations in England and Scotland, and also due to James II's promise to the Irish Parliament of an eventual right to self-determination.[36][19]

Community and policy

From its religious roots, Jacobite ideology was passed on through committed families of the nobility and gentry who would have pictures of the exiled royal family and of Cavalier and Jacobite martyrs, and take part in like minded networks. Even today, some Highland clans and regiments pass their drink over a glass of water during the Loyal Toast – to the King Over the Water. More widely, commoners developed communities in areas where they could fraternise in Jacobite alehouses, inns and taverns, singing seditious songs, collecting for the cause and on occasion being recruited for risings. At government attempts to close such places they simply transferred to another venue. In these neighbourhoods Jacobite wares such as inscribed glassware, brooches with hidden symbols and tartan waistcoats were popular. The criminal activity of smuggling became associated with Jacobitism throughout Britain, partly because of the advantage of dealing through exiled Jacobites in France.

Official policy of the court in exile initially reflected the uncompromising intransigence that got James into trouble in the first place. With the powerful support of the French they saw no need to accommodate the concerns of his Protestant subjects, and effectively issued a summons for them to return to their duty. In 1703 Louis pressed James into a more accommodating stance in the hopes of detaching England from the Grand Alliance, essentially promising to maintain the status quo. This policy soon changed, and increasingly Jacobitism ostensibly identified itself with causes of the alienated and dispossessed.


There were Jacobite risings in 1689, 1715, 1719 and 1745. There were also planned French invasions of Britain in support with or in support of the Jacobites in 1708 and 1744.


Jacobitism entered permanent decline after the "Forty-Five" rebellion.

Crushing of the clans

In an effort to prevent further trouble in the Scottish Highlands, the government outlawed many cultural practices to destroy the warrior clan system. The Act of Proscription 1746 – incorporating the Disarming Act and the Dress Act – required all swords to be surrendered to the government and prohibited wearing of tartans or kilts. The Tenures Abolition Act 1660 ended the feudal bond of military service and the Heritable Jurisdictions Act 1746 removed the virtually sovereign power the chiefs had over their clan. The extent of enforcement of the prohibitions was variable and sometimes related to a clan's support of the government during the rebellion.

Government troops were stationed in the Highlands. More roads and barracks were built to better control the region, with a new fortress at Fort George to the east of Inverness which still serves as a base for Highland Regiments of the British Army. Highland clans found a way back to legitimacy by providing regiments to the British Army, many of whom served with distinction in the subsequent Seven Years' War.

Difficulties in France

The French made every effort to rescue Jacobite chieftains as well as Charles, and gave him a hero's welcome on his return to France, but soon tired of his badgering them to provide a renewed assault on the Hanoverians. After French victories knocked the Netherlands out of the war, the British offered reasonable peace terms and made the expulsion of Charles from France a precondition of negotiations. Charles ignored the French court's order to depart, continued to demand military action and support for his extravagant lifestyle and flaunted his presence around Paris as peace negotiations for the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle got under way. After British complaints the French government lost patience with Charles and in December 1748 he was seized on his way to the Opéra and briefly jailed before being expelled.

Elibank plot

From 1749 to 1751 Charles laid the groundwork for a rising in England, visiting London in 1750 when he conferred with the Jacobite leaders and considered an assault on the Tower of London as well as converting to Anglicanism. The English Jacobites were clear that they would not move without foreign assistance, and Charles turned to Frederick II of Prussia. While Frederick was indifferent to the Jacobite cause he made diplomatic use of the opportunity, and appointed the Earl Marischal as his ambassador to Paris, in a position to keep him informed and veto any plans. Alexander Murray of Elibank House, Taplow, the liaison between Charles and the plotters, finally realised there was no hope of foreign assistance and ended the conspiracy, but by then Charles had sent two exiled Scots as agents to prepare the clans. They were betrayed by Alistair Ruadh MacDonell of Glengarry, a spy in Charles's entourage, and while one was arrested, the other barely escaped. Charles responded to the failure by denouncing his comrades, and continuing with his by now routine drunkenness and abuse of his mistress. Finally, in a dispute with Marischal and the English conspirators in 1754, a drunken Charles threatened to publish their names for having "betrayed" him, finally causing his supporters to abandon the Jacobite cause.

Loss of French support

In 1759 French naval defeats at Lagos and Quiberon Bay forced them to abandon a planned invasion of Britain, which would have placed Charles on the throne. It is often considered the last realistic chance for the Jacobites. With its passing, Charles collapsed yet further into alcoholism and was soon entirely abandoned by the French government, who saw little further use for him. The English Jacobites stopped sending funds, and by 1760 Charles, who had returned to Catholicism, was relying on the Papacy to support his lifestyle in Rome.

In 1766, when Old Pretender James (VIII/III) Edward Stuart died, the Holy See refused to recognise "Bonnie" Prince Charles as the lawful sovereign of Great Britain, thus depriving him of his most powerful remaining support, the French support being long gone. In 1788, the Scottish Catholics swore allegiance to the House of Hanover, and resolved two years later to pray for King George by name.

Henry IX

Monument to the Stuarts detail
Detail of the monument in the Vatican

When Charles died in 1788 the Stuart claim to the throne passed to his younger brother Henry, who had become a Cardinal, and who now styled himself King Henry IX of England. After falling into financial difficulty during the French Revolution, he was granted a stipend by George III. However, he never actually surrendered his claims to the throne, though all former supporters of Jacobitism had stopped funding. Following the death of Henry in 1807, the Jacobite claims passed to those excluded by the Act of Settlement: initially to the House of Savoy (1807–1840), then to the Modenese branch of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (1840–1919), and finally to the House of Wittelsbach (1919–present). Franz, Duke of Bavaria is the current Jacobite heir. Neither he nor any of his predecessors since 1807 have pursued their claim. Henry, Charles and James are memorialised in the Monument to the Royal Stuarts in the Vatican.


What began with the English parliament asserting a new authority and William looking to expand alliances against France quickly developed into a major distraction, with William being forced to focus attention on Ireland and Scotland, and parliament having to fund the armies needed to overcome the Jacobites. This distraction helped keep Britain from intervening on the continent and contributed to twenty years of peace in Europe, while continuing unrest forced the British state to develop repressive strategies with networks of spies and informers as well as increasing its standing army. While Jacobitism increasingly appealed to the disaffected, it inherently bowed to higher authority and thus reinforced the social order. It left the British state strengthened to deal with the more revolutionary movements that developed later in the 18th century.

Romantic revival

Pettie - Jacobites, 1745
"Jacobites" by John Pettie: romantic view of Jacobitism

Jacobitism is celebrated in many folk songs, including those by nineteenth century Scots poets such as Alicia Spottiswoode and Carolina Nairne, Lady Nairne (whose "Bonnie Charlie" remains popular). The Corries were well-known for singing this type of music. One of the best known songs is Mo Ghile Mear by Seán Clárach Mac Domhnaill which has been sung by many artists including Sting. Additionally, Jacobitism became the subject of romantic poetry and literature, notably the work of Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott.

Walter Scott, author of Waverley, a story of the 1745 rebellion, combined romantic Jacobitism with an appreciation of the practical benefits of the Hanoverian government, and in 1822 he arranged a pageantry of reinvented Scottish traditions for the visit of King George IV to Scotland when George IV visited Edinburgh and dressed as a kilted successor to his distant relative Charles Stuart. The tartan pageantry was immensely popular and the kilt became Scotland's National Dress.

Neo-Jacobite revival

There was a brief revival of political Jacobitism in the 1890s.[37] A number of Jacobite clubs and societies were formed, such as the Order of the White Rose. In 1890, Herbert Vivian and Ruaraidh Erskine co-founded a weekly newspaper, The Whirlwind, that espoused a Jacobite political view.[38] Vivian, Erskine and Melville Henry Massue formed the Legitimist Jacobite League of Great Britain and Ireland in 1891, which lasted for several years. Vivian went on to stand for Parliament four times on a Jacobite platform – though he failed to be elected each time.[39] The revival largely came to an end with the First World War and the various societies of the time are now represented by the Royal Stuart Society.

In literature and popular culture

Jacobitism has been a popular subject for historical novels, and for speculative and humorous fiction.

Historical novels Waverley (novel) and Rob Roy (novel) by Sir Walter Scott focus on the first and second Jacobite rebellions.

Kidnapped (1886) is a historical fiction adventure novel by the Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson that features the intrigues of Jacobite troubles in Scotland.

In 1909, a short story by John Buchan entitled The Company of the Marjolaine was published in Blackwood's Magazine. The plot of the story concerns a group of Jacobite sympathisers paying a visit to an aged Bonnie Prince Charlie towards the end of his life.

In the 1920s, D. K. Broster wrote the Jacobite Trilogy of novels featuring the dashing hero Ewen Cameron.

Science Fiction writer John Whitbourn described his 1998 book, The Royal Changeling as "The first work of Jacobite propaganda for several centuries".

Among the political entities sharing a future human-settled galaxy depicted by A. Bertram Chandler is "The Jacobite Kingdom of Waverly". One of Chandler's stories mentions "the coronation of King James XIV", held with great pomp and broadcast throughout the Galaxy.

Joan Aiken's Wolves Chronicles have as background an alternative history of England, in which King James III, a Stuart, is on the throne, and the Hanoverians plot to overthrow him.

In an episode of The Avengers TV series, "Esprit de Corps", originally broadcast 14 March 1964,[40] a Scottish general plots a coup using Cathy Gale as the Stuart heir, whom he wishes to enthrone as Queen Anne II.

Garrison Keillor told one of his Lake Wobegon stories, "The Royal Family", about a poor Minnesota family who are persuaded that they are the long-lost Stuart heirs. They dream of returning to Edinburgh and taking their rightful place on the throne of Scotland.[41]

A fictional account is given of the Jacobite/Hanoverian conflict in The Long Shadow, The Chevalier and The Maiden, Volumes 6–8 of The Morland Dynasty, a series of historical novels by author Cynthia Harrod-Eagles. Insight is given through the eyes of the Morland family into the religious, political and emotional issues at the heart of the struggle.

In the film King Ralph, Ralph Jones, an American, becomes King of the United Kingdom when he is believed to be the only surviving member of the current Royal Family. Lord Percival Graves, the current heir to the throne under the Stuart line of succession, tries to have King Ralph deposed so he can take his place.

In the 1995 film Rob Roy, it is a minor plot element with the Scottish Marquis of Montrose (John Hurt) attempting to covertly cultivate rumours that his personal rival and fellow Scot, Duke of Argyll (Andrew Keir) is a Jacobite, much to the latter's fury.

The first two books of the Diana Gabaldon series "Outlander" focus on the causes and lead up to the final Jacobite Battle of Culloden. The continuing books involve the repercussions of English rule in Scotland and the Scottish immigrants fighting in the American Revolution. The first book was published under the title Cross Stitch in the UK.

The popular Starz TV series "Outlander", which is based on the Gabaldon series, heavily features the Jacobite rising of 1745 throughout the first two seasons.[42]

Claimants to the thrones of England, Scotland, Ireland and France

  • James II and VII (6 February 1685 – 16 September 1701).
  • James III and VIII (16 September 1701 – 1 January 1766), James Francis Edward Stuart, also known as the Chevalier de St. George, the King over the Water, or the Old Pretender. (Son of James II)
  • Charles III (31 December 1720 – 31 January 1788), Charles Edward Stuart, also known as Bonnie Prince Charlie, the Young Chevalier, or the Young Pretender. (Son of James III)
  • Henry IX and I (6 March 1725 – 13 July 1807), Henry Benedict Stuart, also known as the Cardinal King. (Son of James III)

Since Henry's death, none of the Jacobite heirs have claimed the English or Scottish thrones. Franz, Duke of Bavaria (born 1933), a direct descendant of Charles I, is the current legitimate heir of the house of Stuart. It has been suggested that a repeal of the Act of Settlement 1701 could allow him to claim the throne, although he has expressed no interest in doing so.[43]

See also


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  11. ^ Wormsley, David (2015). James II: The Last Catholic King. Allen Lane. p. 189. ISBN 978-0141977065.
  12. ^ Harris, Tim (2007). Revolution; the Great Crisis of the British Monarchy 1685–1720. Penguin. pp. 3–5. ISBN 978-0141016528.
  13. ^ Harris, Tim (2007). Revolution; the Great Crisis of the British Monarchy 1685–1720. Penguin. pp. 271–272. ISBN 978-0141016528.
  14. ^ Harris, Tim (2007). Revolution: The Great Crisis of the British Monarchy, 1685–1720. Penguin. pp. 379–386. ISBN 978-0141016528.
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  17. ^ Phillips, Kevin (1999), The Cousins Wars, New York: Basic Books, pp. 52–3
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  21. ^ John L. Roberts. Clan, King and Covenant: History of the Highland Clans from the Civil War to the Glencoe Massacre. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2000. xii + 258 pp. $23.00 (paper), ISBN 978-0-7486-1393-9.
  22. ^ "History of the Chisholm Clan". Rampantscotland.com. Retrieved 2017-05-17.
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 16 January 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2013.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
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  • Ruvigny and Raineval, Marquis de (Melville Henry Massue) (comp.). The Jacobite Peerage, Baronetage, Knightage and Grants of Honour. Edinburgh: T. C. & E. C. Jack, 1904.
  • The Lion in the North, John Prebble, Penguin Books 1973
  • Maritime Scotland, Brian Lavery, B. T. Batsford Ltd., 2001, ISBN 0-7134-8520-5
  • Scotland, A Concise History, Fitzroy Maclean, Thames and Hudson 1991, ISBN 0-500-27706-0
  • Bonnie Prince Charlie, Fitzroy Maclean, Canongate Books Ltd. 1989 ISBN 0-86241-568-3
  • The Jacobites, Britain and Europe 1688–1788, Daniel Szechi, Manchester University Press 1994 ISBN 0-7190-3774-3
  • The Myths of the Jacobite Clans, Murray G. H. Pittock, Edinburgh University Press 1995 ISBN 0-7486-0715-3
  • Georgian Monarchy: Politics and Culture, 1714–60, Hannah Smith, Cambridge University Press 2006
  • The Material Culture of the Jacobites, Neil Guthrie, Cambridge University Press 2014 ISBN 9781107041332
  • Jacobite Prisoners of the 1715 Rebellion. Preventing and Punishing Insurrection in Early Hanoverian Britain. Margaret Sankey, Ashgate Publishing, Aldershot, Hampshire, England 2005, ISBN 0-7546-3631-3.
  • Jacobitism and Anti-Jacobitism in the British Atlantic World, 1688–1727, David Parrish, (Studies in History New Series), 2017

External links

1715 England riots

In the spring and summer of 1715 a series of riots occurred in England, protesting against the first Hanoverian king of Britain, George I and his new Whig government. The rioters often attacked Dissenting chapels (the Dissenters were allied to the Whigs). The riots occurred on symbolic days: 28 May was George I's birthday, 29 May was the anniversary of Charles II's Restoration and 10 June was James Francis Edward Stuart's birthday.

Battle of Loup Hill

The Battle of Loup Hill was a minor skirmish fought on the slopes of Loup Hill (Scottish Gaelic: Cruach na Luib) in Kintyre on 16 May 1689 between Scottish Jacobite and government troops.

While the battle itself was insignificant, the loss of Kintyre was a serious strategic setback for the Jacobites since it prevented the Scots being easily re-supplied by their Irish and French allies in Ulster.

Coronation riots

The coronation riots of October 1714 were a series of riots in southern and western England in protest against the coronation of the first Hanoverian king of Britain, George I.

Eveline Cruickshanks

Eveline Cruickshanks (born 1926) is an historian of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century British political history, specialising in Jacobitism and Toryism. She is of English, Scottish and French blood. She is an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Historical Research of the University of London.

Cruickshanks edited the volumes of the History of Parliament for the years 1690–1715 and wrote all of the major biographies of Tory parliamentarians for the volumes covering 1715–1754, edited by Romney Sedgwick. J. C. D. Clark has spoken of Cruickshanks' "pioneering work on the Tories" and has argued: "What made Sedgwick's volumes explosive was Dr Cruickshanks' argument, which made it impossible so to brush Tory survival aside: that the Tories were heavily involved, at different times, with Jacobitism and that the latter was a powerful and lasting force in politics".She published The Glorious Revolution in 2000 (Palgrave-Macmillan). Toryism and Jacobitism in the late seventeenth and eighteenth century is her special interest and she has edited several volumes of essays on the subject. The Atterbury Plot written with the late Professor Howard Erskine-Hill published in 2004 is the first full scale study of this subject. She is currently preparing a revised edition of Political Untouchables; The Tories and the ‘45.

She is Chairman of the Jacobite Studies Trust, a registered Charity, whose first conference was held at the British Academy on 11–12 July 2007. She is a former Chairman of the Royal Stuart Society, and presently one of its Vice-Presidents.

High Tory

High Toryism (sometimes referred to as conservative gentryism) is a term used in Britain, and elsewhere, to refer to old traditionalist conservatism which is in line with the Toryism originating in the 17th century. High Tories and their worldview are sometimes at odds with the modernising elements of the Conservative Party. Historically, the late eighteenth-century conservatism derived from the Whig Edmund Burke and William Pitt the Younger marks a watershed from the "higher" or legitimist Toryism that was allied to Jacobitism.

High Toryism has been described by Andrew Heywood as neo-feudalist in its preference for a traditional hierarchical society over utopian equality, as well for holding the traditional gentry as a higher cultural benchmark than the bourgeoisie and those who have attained their position through commerce or labour. Economically, High Tories generally tend to prefer a paternalistic Tory corporatism and protectionism over the neo-liberalism which took hold in the 1960s, although there are some that advocate more free market policies.

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery is a museum and gallery on Castle Wynd in Inverness in the Highlands of Scotland. Admission is free. The collection and facilities are managed by High Life Highland on behalf of Highland Council.

The original Inverness Museum opened in 1881 and began to develop as a Highland and Jacobite collection. One of the important early additions was a group of historic Stuart portraits donated by the family of Prince Frederick Duleep Singh, including a portrait of Prince Charles Edward Stuart attributed to Pompeo Batoni and a Cromwell that Prince Freddy hung upside down. Subsequent additions to the collection include examples of Highland landscapes by Scottish artists including Alexander Nasmyth, John Quinton Pringle and Tom Scott.

The Castle Wynd/Bridge Street area of Inverness was cleared for re-development in 1963 and the current complex was built. Since 1963 there have been a two major redevelopments to improve the museum: the first in 1982 to incorporate a café, new permanent galleries and temporary exhibition/art galleries, and again in 2006 it was closed for six months to allow a £1.3m makeover, with the re-design completed in time for Highland 2007.The Museum presents history and heritage in the Capital of the Highlands. On the ground floor you will find Scottish geology and natural history as well as the archaeology of the Highlands including Pictish stones. The displays continue on the first floor with the more recent history of the Highlands – Jacobite memorabilia, Inverness silver, Highland weapons and bagpipes. The first floor features a programme of temporary exhibitions.

In 1980 a puma was captured in Inverness-shire; it is believed that it was an abandoned pet. The puma was subsequently put into a wildlife park. When it died it was stuffed and placed in the Museum.

Jacobite assassination plot 1696

The Jacobite assassination plot 1696 was an unsuccessful attempt led by George Barclay to ambush and kill William III of England in early 1696.

Jacobite risings

The Jacobite risings, also known as the Jacobite rebellions or the War of the British Succession, were a series of uprisings, rebellions, and wars in Great Britain and Ireland occurring between 1688 and 1746. The uprisings had the aim of returning James II of England and VII of Scotland, the last Catholic British monarch, and later his descendants of the House of Stuart, to the throne of Great Britain after they had been deposed by Parliament during the Glorious Revolution. The series of conflicts takes its name Jacobitism, from Jacobus, the Latin form of James.

Jacobite rising may refer to any of the following:

Jacobite rising of 1689

Williamite War in Ireland, James's attempts to regain the throne in Ireland

Jacobite assassination plot 1696

Planned French invasion of Britain (1708), included Jacobite support.

Jacobite rising of 1715

Jacobite rising of 1719

Planned French invasion of Britain (1744), included Jacobite support.

Jacobite rising of 1745

Planned French invasion of Britain (1759), included Jacobite support.

Jacobite succession

The Jacobite succession is the line through which the crown in pretence of England, Scotland and Ireland (France also claimed) has descended since the flight of James II & VII from London at the time of the "Glorious Revolution". James and his Jacobite successors were traditionally toasted as "The King over the Water". After the death of James's grandson, Henry Benedict Stuart, in 1807, none of the notional Jacobite "successors" have claimed the thrones of England and Scotland or incorporated the arms of England and Scotland in their coats-of-arms.

Jacobite uprising in Cornwall of 1715

The Jacobite uprising in Cornwall of 1715 was the last uprising against the British Crown to take place in the county of Cornwall.

McGillicuddy Serious Party

The McGillicuddy Serious Party (McGSP) was a satirical political party in New Zealand in the late 20th century. Between 1984 and 1999, it provided "colour" to ensure that citizens not take the political process too seriously. The party's logo, the head of a medieval court jester, indicated its status as a joke party.

The party stood candidates in the 1984, 1987, 1990, 1993, 1996 and 1999 general elections and the 1986, 1989, 1992, 1995 and 1998 Local Body elections; along with local-body and parliamentary by-elections and university student association elections.It gained its highest number of votes in the last first-past-the-post (FPP) general election in 1993, when it stood candidates in 62 out of 99 electorates and received 11,714 votes, 0.61% of the vote.

Mo Ghile Mear

"Mo Ghile Mear" (My Gallant Darling) is an Irish song, written in the Irish language by Seán Clárach Mac Domhnaill in the 18th century. Composed in the convention of Aisling poetry, it is a lament by the Gaelic goddess Éire for Bonnie Prince Charlie, who was then in exile.The song differs from more conventional Aisling poems. Whereas Aisling poetry normally has the poet asleep or otherwise minding his own business when he experiences a dream or vision of a fair maid, in this poem the poet personifies Éire/Ireland, the country itself, as a woman who once was a fair maiden but is now a widow. Her husband, the "Gallant Boy", is not dead but far away. As a consequence the land is failing and nature itself is in decline. This is a theme also used in "Seán Ó Duibhir an Ghleanna" and "Cill Chais".

Neo-Jacobite Revival

The Neo-Jacobite Revival was a political movement that took place during the 25 years before the First World War in the United Kingdom. The movement was Monarchist, and had the specific aim to replace British parliamentary democracy with a restored monarch from the deposed House of Stuart.

Nonjuring schism

The nonjuring schism was a split in the Anglican churches of England, Scotland, and Ireland in the aftermath of the Glorious Revolution of 1688, over whether William III and Mary II could legally be recognised as sovereigns.

The word nonjuring means "not swearing [an oath]", from the Latin verb iūrō or jūrō meaning "to swear an oath".

Many of the Anglican clergy felt legally bound by their previous oaths of allegiance to James II and, though they could accept William as regent, they could not accept him as king. It was not necessarily a split on matters of religious doctrine, but more of a political issue and a matter of conscience, though most of the nonjurors were high-church Anglicans. Thus, latitudinarian Anglicans were handed control of the Church of England, while Presbyterians took control of the Church of Scotland. The nonjurors thus were nominally Jacobite, although they generally did not actively support the Jacobite Uprisings in 1715 or 1745.

Paul Monod

Paul Kléber Monod (born 25 June 1957) is a Canadian-born academic historian specializing in Jacobitism and British history in the 17th and 18th centuries. Since 1984 he has taught at Middlebury College, Vermont, where he is now A. Barton Hepburn Professor of History, and he is the author of a number of books and articles dealing with his period.

Royal Stuart Society

The Royal Stuart Society, founded in 1926, is the senior monarchist organisation and the foremost Jacobite body in the United Kingdom. Its full name is The Royal Stuart Society and Royalist League although it is best known simply as the "Royal Stuart Society." It acknowledges Francis, Duke of Bavaria, as head of the Royal House, while refraining from making any claim on his behalf that he does not make himself.

The society organises annual events to commemorate the major anniversaries of Jacobitism and other events of Stuart and royalist interest.

Tories (British political party)

The Tories were members of two political parties which existed sequentially in the Kingdom of England, the Kingdom of Great Britain and later the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from the 17th to the early 19th centuries. The first Tories emerged in 1678 in England, when they opposed the Whig-supported Exclusion Bill which set out to disinherit the heir presumptive James, Duke of York, who eventually became James II of England and VII of Scotland. This party ceased to exist as an organised political entity in the early 1760s, although it was used as a term of self-description by some political writers. A few decades later, a new Tory party would rise to establish a hold on government between 1783 and 1830, with William Pitt the Younger followed by Robert Jenkinson, 2nd Earl of Liverpool.The Earl of Liverpool was succeeded by fellow Tory Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, whose term included the Catholic Emancipation, which occurred mostly due to the election of Daniel O'Connell as a Catholic MP from Ireland. When the Whigs subsequently regained control, the Representation of the People Act 1832 removed the rotten boroughs, many of which were controlled by Tories. In the following general election, the Tory ranks were reduced to 180 MPs. Under the leadership of Robert Peel, the Tamworth Manifesto was issued, which began to transform the Tories into the Conservative Party. However, Peel lost many of his supporters by repealing the Corn Laws, causing the party to break apart. One faction, led by Edward Smith-Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby and Benjamin Disraeli, survived to become the modern Conservative Party, whose members are commonly still referred to as Tories as they still often follow and promote the ideology of Toryism.


A Tory () is a person who holds a political philosophy known as Toryism, based on a British version of traditionalism and conservatism, which upholds the supremacy of social order as it has evolved throughout history. The Tory ethos has been summed up with the phrase "God, King, and Country". Tories generally advocate monarchism, and were historically of a high church Anglican religious heritage, opposed to the liberalism of the Whig faction.

The philosophy originates from the Cavalier faction, a royalist group during the English Civil War. The Tories political faction that emerged in 1681 was a reaction to the Whig-controlled Parliaments that succeeded the Cavalier Parliament. It also has exponents in other parts of the former British Empire, such as the Loyalists of British America, who opposed American secession during the American War of Independence. The loyalists that fled to the Canadas at the end of the American Revolution, the United Empire Loyalists, formed the support base for political cliques in Upper and Lower Canada. Toryism remains prominent in the Commonwealth realms, particularly in Canada, and the United Kingdom. Several Conservative parties in the Commonwealth realms, along with their party members, continue to be referred to as Tories.

The term Tory is used regardless of whether they are traditionalists or not. Adherents to traditional Toryism in contemporary times are referred to as High Tories. The terms Blue Tory and Red Tory have been used to describe the two different factions of the federal and provincial Conservative/Progressive Conservative parties in Canada. In addition, Pink Tory is used in Canadian politics as a pejorative term to describe a member of the Conservative/Progressive Conservative party who is perceived as liberal.


Whiggism (in North America sometimes spelled Whigism) is a historical political philosophy that grew out of the Parliamentarian faction in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms (1639–1651). The Whigs' key policy positions were the supremacy of Parliament (as opposed to that of the king), tolerance of Protestant dissenters and opposition to a "Papist" (Roman Catholic) on the throne, especially James II or one of his descendants.After the huge success (from the Whig point of view) of the Glorious Revolution of 1688–1689, Whiggism dominated English and British politics until about 1760, although in practice the political group splintered into different factions. After 1760, the Whigs lost power – apart from sharing it in some short-lived coalition governments – but Whiggism fashioned itself into a generalised belief system that emphasised innovation and liberty and was strongly held by about half of the leading families in England and Scotland, as well as most merchants, dissenters and the middle classes. The opposing Tory position was held by the other great families, the Church of England, most of the landed gentry and officers of the army and the navy. Whiggs also opposed the pro-Catholic and pro-tradition Jacobitism, a movement with substantial Tory overlaps. While in power, Whiggs frequently referred to all opponents as "Jacobites" or dupes of Jacobites.

Whiggism originally referred to the Whigs of the British Isles, but the name of "Old Whigs" was largely adopted by the American Patriots in the Thirteen Colonies. Following independence, American Whiggism became known as republicanism. The term "Old Whigs" was also used in Britain for those Whigs who opposed Robert Walpole as part of the Country Party.

One meaning of whiggism given by the Oxford English Dictionary is "moderate or antiquated Liberalism".

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