14 July 2016

When the King shall have his own again ...

For a bit of summer fun, I reproduce this ancient (2009) piece with its original thread. I apologise to friends who dislike it; but my sympathies have been Jacobite for about sixty years now and I feel just that little bit too old to change. I beg them to tolerate it as a Period Piece and me as a poor old has-been.

Well, Oxford has just about reached the end of her academic year. The confident accents of the New England upper classes, so delightfully dominant in the streets of Oxford during Full Term, have given place to the no less inscrutable whimperings of Japanese tourists. In the Old Days, last Saturday was the end of the last of the four terms into which the academic year was divided: commonly called Act Term. The University "Act" was a scurrilous occasion upon which a speaker called Terrae Filius made a satirical attack on pretty well everything. Unfortunately, so edifying a custom could not survive the eighteenth century. It is not simply that such things fell foul of whiggish, Chesterfieldian, standards of propriety; in the aftermath of the Hannoverian Usurpation they were positively dangerous. Oxford had retained her loyalty to her King, and the young men liked nothing better than to drink toasts to the King over the water, duck Hannover Rats in the river, and give noisy manifestations of their political preferences. So, after the failed attempt by James III in 1715 to restore lawful authority, prudence ordained that the University Act had to be neutered. Not that anybody imagined that Oxford had changed her views; the Elector sent a detachment of troops to make their own point, while demonstrating his favour for the junior university, where Whiggery prevailed, by giving it a generous benefaction of books. Oxford wits observed that he had certainly noticed Oxford's lack of 'loyalty' and had equally accurately discerned Cambridge's lack of learning.

I don't suppose there are many around this July to drink loyal toasts or drown Whigs. Certainly not the New Englanders and probably not the Japanese. But today is the Birthday of the Prince who, by the laws of primogeniture would inherit the crowns of Henry IX, and last week was the Anniversary of his Accession de jure to the Thrones of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland; to the Dukedoms of Bavaria, Franconia, and Swabia; and to the County Palatine of the Rhine.

Vivat Rex.

Church and State.


You know it makes sense.


Rubricarius said...

That really is a deeply offensive post Fr. John. What is otherwise an excellent blog is marred by this.

Our gloriously reigning Sovereign is Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Her natural birthday is 21st April and Her official birthday in June.

Less of the treasonous promoting of foreign wannabes (or for that matter not-wannabes) please!

Once I Was A Clever Boy said...

If you take the legitimist case through and through should you not refer to the de -jure ruler of Bavaris as King of Bavaria, rather than as Duke? The Kingdom obviously includes the Rheinpfalz. Although, admittedly, the Kingdom of Bavaria originated under the partial aegis of the Corsican ogre it was subsequently recognised by the 1814-15 settlement.

The Religious Pícaro said...

Sorry, but the name "New England" is already taken - by New England (the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Vermont).

johnf said...

I recall in my history book (a standard tome, not slanted to any denomination) that in 1714 when the question of the succession arose:

'Thrice armed is he who has his quarrel just (James III)
But ten times armed is he, who gets his blow in fust (George of Hannover)'

David Starky makes a similar point.

But practically speaking, surely a Catholic King back on the throne in 1714 would have caused riots in the streets of London.

But this doesnt detract from the legitimacy of the Stuart line, which stems from Charles I.

But a somewhat theoretical concept now surely.

Someone pointed out recently that Thomas More said 'Anne (Boleyn) is my queen because Parliament tells me so'. So our present Monarch's legitimacy was sealed at her proclamation in 1952.

The only point of difference I had with your mischevious post Father was to describe Japanese tourists as 'whimpering' - surely you mean 'whispering'

Fr John Hunwicke said...

I'm deeply mystified by BillyD. Of course I know what and where New England is, and what New Englanders are and where they come from.

Sorry, Rubricarius: but I did have what I know to be your views in mind mind when I modified the rather more explicit first draft of that post ...

S.R. Fraczek said...

You are very naughty sometimes, Father - although today, and on his Accession on July 8th, I do pray for HM The King of Bavaria.

O Lord, make thy servant Elizabeth our Queen to rejoice in thy strength:give her her heart's desire, and deny not the request of her lips; but prevent her with thine everlasting blessing, and give her a long life, even for ever and ever. Amen.

Canon Jerome Lloyd OSJV said...

Don't apologise Fr H?! It is a valid and defensible position to toast the "TRUE monarch" if one believes in the "Divine Right of Kings"!

St Thomas Moore was of course being scriptural in his statement, honoring "those whom God has seen fit to put over us"... Doesn't mean they have the "right" to rule - just means that they have the position to assert their power... If and when however, they propose heresy to us - by usurping the powers any man may judge them to effectually hold as a "sovereign" government - we have every right to defy them - even to martyrdom!

The Religious Pícaro said...

So you mean that Oxford streets are full of people from New England during Full Term? Now I'm the one that's deeply mystified.

Canon Jerome Lloyd OSJV said...

BillyD... it's not that difficult to appreciate and if you frequented Oxford you would see and hear for yourself that the majority of students these days seem to hail from New England... its the "new" Harvard for the aspiring (if slightly eccentric) American upper/middle classes...

The Legitimist of Principle said...

I really hate to disagree with the learned author of the S Lawrence Press blog, but regretfully, I must, since he mentions this:

‘Our gloriously reigning Sovereign is Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.’
- Well, if you like, but I have recently been persuaded to adopt the late Lord Altrincham's opinion of this lady.
Years ago, I happened to meet the then adjutant of the Life Guards at dinner at a friend's house. The most memorable part of the evening, apart from my date’s evident greater interest in the soldier than myself (alas! But in my defence, he was probably the most eligible bachelor in the county that evening), was that I astonished him and our hosts with my excessive zeal for the beneficiaries of the Hanoverian usurpation. It was his job to ensure their well-being and not mine, and he thought I was o t t. As I now do. I am over that now, and regret my misplaced loyalty.

‘Less of the treasonous promoting of foreign...not-wannabess’
- The head of the united Royal House of England and Scotland is never foreign, no matter what language he speaks, and is the head of the dynasty whether he happens to want to be or not. And, er, what else was Georg von Braunscweig-Luneburg if not 'foreign'?

‘That really is a deeply offensive post.’
- Speaking for myself, I think the really offensive thing is that my country was invaded by the international terrorist Orangemember, (maimed in an unfortunate fruit-themed search for a title that would make his family look more important than other dutch counts) at the plotting of a tiny number of domestic traitors.

In 1690, Willem van der not my country did not dare take the English army and relied on foreign mercenaries to take to fight K James in Ireland.

On a previous page the learned blogger of these notes was described as a ‘crypto-Jacobite’. Less of the ‘crypts’, I say. His loyalty is clear for all to see.

God save the king. Send him soon…

William Tighe said...

I am all for founding a Balthasar Grebier fan club; it's a pity that the Oranges weren't squeezed sooner.

Rubricarius said...

'Legitimist of Principle' thank you for the kind compliment.

Of course I must beg to differ with you and our blog host.

I don't think anyone could argue that the descendents of the House of Saxe-Coburg Gotha Battenberg are not foreign in one sense but that would very different to wishing to usurp them with a pretender.

Why should the Stuart succession be seen as legitimate? What about the Plantagenets or the Saxons (which might bring us back of course to the Saxe-Coburgs)?

If one has been born and is living in the realm I think it a matter of decency to show some loyalty to the Sovereign.

Anonymous said...

Things like this used to be settled with a good ol' war with executions following. And I'm popping hot, buttery, salty corn just for the occasion!

But really: Isn't the Stuart line traced through the once lovely and gracious now "murdered" Princes D?

johnf said...

Why should the Stuart succession be seen as legitimate? What about the Plantagenets or the Saxons (which might bring us back of course to the Saxe-Coburgs)?

Henry I married Edith who was of the Saxon bloodline

Henry II was son of Matilda who was the rightful successor to the throne, but who was usurped by Stephen. After years of civil war, the line swung back onto its proper course.

George I and successors are descended from Elizabeth, daughter of James I.

The current Stuart pretenders are descended from Henrietta Anne, 4th child of Charles I.

The rules of the game say that Charles daughter takes precedence over James'.

I believe that that is why the current Royal Family can't be Roman Catholic nor even marry one.

If it happened, some family skeletons might come out of the cupboard and start to rattle ominously.

Rubricarius said...

For a point of view that claims (by implication) the Stuarts were not lawful monarchs:


johnf said...


Long live King Mike, eh!

C J Sansom in his excellent historical novel 'Sovereign' mentions that as well.

This if true would also invalidate our current Queen's claim to the throne.

Woody said...

I will be waiting for the Great King, of much prophecy.

Rubricarius said...


Precisely, once the claim of the current Sovereign is rejected it all becomes rather subjective I fear.

I would have thought that when a monarch is accepted as such by the people they reign over, by the Church and by their peers (not that there are many of those left) then I personally do not see it is useful to debate other lines of succession. Unless I am mistaken I didn't think the Duke of Bavaria actually claimed the English throne anyway (rather like 'King' Michael).

My last words on the matter have to be simply: God save The Queen!

Anonymous said...

The Legitimist has gone to ground as he felt the agents of the hanoverian regime snapping at his heels, and has deputed me to reply for him.

Just like to debate these points

‘Saxe-Coburg Gotha Battenberg’ - WHO on earth could they be? You wouldn't be mixing up the maiden family of Princess Elizabeth and the title of Prince Philip of Greece's mother's family, would you? If the dynasty I think you are referring to presently has a designation it is Sleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg – a house, not a surname, because the Danish Royal Family doesn’t have one – except they do now, since they abandoned Salic Law and ‘Queen’ Margaret married Henri Marie Jean André Count of Laborde de Monpezat, who inevitably gives his name to his family. I doubt he can be created a prince of Denmark, could have been of some other title, but in any case should be King Consort. Danish dynasty now has a new name, Laborde de Monpezat, but not the other extant branches, in Greece, Norway and now in Britain.
Any female dynast marrying enters her husband’s house and takes their titles. Princely titles seem not to be transmitted through the female line in any circumstances, although dynastic rights are.

‘What about the Plantagenets or the Saxons (which might bring us back of course to the Saxe-Coburgs)?’ - hardly.
I am glad you raised that. The present senior representative of Alfred the Great is Francis of Bavaria. It goes through the female line a few times, in default of male heirs, but both England and Scotland accepted female monarchs as well as descents.
the united English and Scotch Royal House – this term is used advisedly. It does not refer to the descendents of the Norman invaders or their Angevin successors.

It was providence that the Scots took the English throne in 1603. The king of Scots was the best representative the Anglo-Saxon monarchy had sonce the death of Edgar the Atheling in 1125.

‘monarch is accepted as such by the people they reign over, by the Church…’

- There is possibly an argument about acceptance by the people, but I think William the Bastard (remember to get that name right) was accepted like the SS was. ‘If we shut up he’ll stop killing us and laying waste our land.’ Not an edifying picture of Christian kingship. The other counter to that is that terror and ignorance have their uses. Not to mention lying Whig history.

Anonymous said...

And no cavalry officers have ogled any of my girlfriends

G. Thomas Fitzpatrick said...

Father, I enjoyed this post!

I noted twice references to New England. For Americans, that has a very specific meaning: the six state region of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont. New England is chock-a-block with colleges and universities, including both Harvard and Yale, Brown & Dartmouth, Middlebury & Wellesley, my own alma mater Boston College (Jesuit) & Providence College.

All these colleges (and there are a great many more, "higher education" being the most consistent growth industry of the last 60 years) send numerous students for "Junior Year Abroad" to Oxford.

Do you mean that there are so many Yankee college kids flooding Oxford that upper class Yankee (another term that generally means New England) accents are very noticeable on the streets of Oxford?

Or is your use of "New England" a reference to a British political/social change that has made itself felt in British society, rather like the socialist "New Man" back in the dark old days? Or is it a result of something Maggie Thatcher did to change the nature of British Society?

I think it rather more likely you mean some internal British thing, as I doubt that enough rich Yankee kids are flooding the streets and pubs of Oxford to be THAT noticeable.

Romulus said...

One whose university is in Virginia can only smile at a reference to "upper-class Yankees".

Fr Allan said...

As a member of the Royal Stuart Society (and for a time, sixty years ago, a member of its Council) I concur.

Banshee said...

I do hate to point this out, especially since it goes back to 2009. But "right of conquest" is actually part of natural law too, and hence of Catholic social teaching. I don't say that it's a fun part, but it's pretty clearly there. (And I direct your attention to the Book of Joshua, among other places.)

Of course, that cuts both ways, and frequently did in English history.(So it was entirely fair for Bonnie Prince Charlie to try his hand at invading back.) But accusing William the Conqueror of going against Catholic social teaching for invadinga and conquering is silly. (His trick with the relic tub was very dodgy, so why not inveigh against that, instead?)