• 1660

    Charles II

  • 1685

    James II

  • 1688

    Mary II and William III

  • 1694-1702

    James II

  • 1707

    The Act of Union

  • 1714-1727

    King George I

  • 1727-1760

    King George II

  • 1783

    Charles Edward defeated


Charles II

Charles II becomes king of the monarchy that has just been restored (hence Restoration).

As Anglicanism also is restored, Puritans are given limited rights and are dubbed ‘Nonconformists’ or ‘Dissenters’.


James II

Two parties arise during the debate over the succession of the King’s brother, the Duke of York: Tories (pro-James) and Whigs (anti-James).

The Duke of York succeeds as James II. For some time, his pro-Catholic policies are endured because he has two Protestant daughters.


Mary II and William III

James’s Protestant daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange accept the crown jointly as Mary II and William III (Bloodless Revolution).

They sign the Bill of Rights, pledging to rule in accordance with the law. Britain becomes a constitutional monarchy.


James II

After Queen Mary’s death, William III rules in his own right and defeats James II, who tries to regain the crown with the help of the Irish.

The Act of Settlement excludes Catholics from the succession.


The Act of Union

Queen Anne, Mary’s sister, crushes an attempt by James II’s son (the “Old Pretender”) to regain the crown.

The Act of Union merges the English and Scottish Parliaments into one.


King George I

The country is ruled by the first Hanoverian king, James I’s German grandson, George I. Robert Walpole is the first Prime Minister in history. His free trade policies are opposed by William Pitt the Elder, who recommends aggressive colonial and imperial policies.


King George II

King George II fights a number of wars on Chatham’s advice.


Charles Edward defeated

Charles Edward, the ‘Young Pretender’, is defeated in the Scottish Highlands. At this point, the Jacobite cause is a thing of the past.

The Treaty of Paris ends the Seven Years’ War. Britain strips Canada from the French, takes over Florida from Spain and retains her possessions in India – the core of Britain’s 1st Colonial Empire.

Guarda e rispondi


    Anglo-Saxon tribes were led by a king, who was helped by professional warriors (thanes) linked to him by a strong sense of loyalty. Whereas the Celtic clan system was based on kinship (blood relations), the basis of aristocracy and kingship is a personal tie between the warrior and his lord.

    The warriors that conquered the country were soon joined by groups of common people (ceorls) including peasants, women, and children.

    Unlike ceorls, thanes were warriors who had been given more land (up to 5 hides) as a reward for their services. In times of war, each family (owning a hide) provided a fully-armed man. As ceorls only fought in cases of need, while thanes specialized in fighting, a sharp class division arose between warriors and peasants. The thane offered defence in exchange for services, and local ceorls would either work for him or pay him a sort of rent ‘in kind’ (a part of their produce).

    The social structure of Britain was about to develop into a feudal system: the thane was about to become a feudal lord, while ceorls, bordars (those owning less than a hide) and cottars (who owned only a cot = small house, or hut) were becoming serfs. Besides ceorls and thanes, there was a third social class: the clergy, or class of priests.

    Being the only ones able to read and write, clergymen promoted civilisation and culture. Priests and monks were the earliest legal advisers, teaching kings how to draw up documents and charters and change the law of the country, which had always been based on custom only


    The restoration and the XVIII Century