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William III, 1650 - 1702. Reigned 1688 - 1702. (with Mary II)

William of Orange (1650 – 1702), Stadholder of the United Provinces, married his cousin, Mary (1662 – 1694), eldest daughter of James, Duke of York (later king), in 1677. William’s relations with his uncles, Charles and James, were uneasy. He deplored James’s use of royal powers to pursue pro-Catholic policies, fearing that the resulting internal conflict would weaken Britain, strengthen France, and so threaten the Dutch. An eventual resolution appeared to lie with his wife, Mary, as heiress presumptive to her father’s kingdoms. When a male Stuart heir was born in 1688, William invaded England. Although he initially claimed that he did not seek the throne, the couple were offered the crown as ...
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Line engraving on paper
36.8 x 27.3cm
SP II 105.8
Image © National Galleries of Scotland, 2020