James II, King of Great Britain

James, the son of Charles I and Henriette of France, was born October 24 1633 at St James's Palace, London
He married firstly Anne, daughter of Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon and Frances Aylesbury, September 3 1659 in London. She died March 31 1671 at St James's Palace, London,  and is buried in Westminster Abbey.
He married secondly, Marie Beatrice, daughter of Alfonso IV, Duke of Modena, and Laura Martinozzi, November 21 1673 at Dover.




Above: Anne Hyde.

Right: James II



James II of England, also James VII, of Scotland, succeeded his brother, Charles II, as King of Great Britain in February 1685. He was crowned in Westminster Abbey  the following April.

During two terms in the office of Lord High Admiral, James had built up the Royal Navy which he led against the Dutch.

The King's pro-Catholic views provoked hostility with the Protestants in England, particularly as he showed favouritism when selecting candidates for high office. Opposition to his religious activities brought about the Glorious Revolution when English Protestants invited William of Orange to take the Crown.

Faced with a Dutch invasion and declining popularity, James II fled the country. Parliament declared that he had abdicated, and this left the way clear for Willem of Orange and his wife, Mary Stuart, eldest daughter of James II, to occupy the British throne.

James II died at in exile at St Germain-en-Laye, France, in September 1701. Marie Beatrice of Modena also died there, May 7 1718.

St Germain-en-Laye.