There is no overall history for general readers of Britain's greatest lost cause, the restoration of our exiled royal family – the Stuarts. Recent research has transformed what we know about it, but has only been available in academic studies. This book fills the gap, telling the whole saga in England, Scotland and Ireland (through Jacobite eyes), from James II's flight in 1688 until his grandson Henry IX's death in 1807.
Most people think of Jacobitism as purely Scottish. Yet a Stuart rising in England was far from impossible until the 1750s when one in four landowners and many working men were Jacobites. The Irish war of 1689-91, the most ferocious of all Jacobite conflicts has been neglected, as has the long loyalty of Irishmen to the Stuarts – even in the 1790s France planned to make Henry IX King of Ireland. There was also an American Jacobitism.
Whether fighting at Killiecrankie, Prestonpans or Culloden, at Aughrim, Limerick or Fontenoy, or dying on the scaffold at Tyburn or the Tower of London, few men gave their lives for a cause with more conviction.
Desmond Seward was born in Paris and educated at Ampleforth and St Catharine's College, Cambridge. He is the author of many books including The Monks of War: The Military Religious Orders, The Hundred Years War, The Wars of the Roses, Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry V as Warlord, Josephus, Masada and the Fall of Judaea (da Capo, US, April 2009), Wings over the Desert: in action with an RFC pilot in Palestine 1916-18 (Haynes Military, July 2009) and Old Puglia: A Portrait of South Eastern Italy (Haus August 2009). Forthcoming is The Last White Rose: the Spectre at the Tudor Court 1485-1547 (C...
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