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James II
of England

England to sound the situation and to take up the threads of Dykvelt's correspondence. At this conjuncture (September) it was suggested to James, through Sunderland (Dalrymple, iii. 134 seqq.), to transfer to the service of the French government, for his own eventual use, the regiments in the Dutch service in his pay. But, though Louis offered to facilitate the proposal by maintaining part of these troops in England (Macaulay, ii. 260), their recall was delayed, and the Prince and Princess of Orange declared their loyalty towards James, while recommending a more moderate policy (Burnet, iii. 215–17). At last, after vainly demanding the extradition of Burnet, James ordered the recall of the six regiments from the service of the states (27 Jan. 1688). The states refused compliance, and finally only some officers returned (Bramston, p. 305). In England prices fell, and warlike preparations began in the Netherlands, where the action of James had brought about cordial relations between the states and the Prince of Orange, and where Louis XIV was suspected of planning an immediate invasion. James had not yet thought of offensive war. On 3 April he issued a proclamation recalling all his subjects in the Dutch service, and authorising their forcible removal after a certain date from Dutch ships. Louis, however, urged the equipment of an English fleet equal in strength to the Dutch (Barillon ap. Mazure, iii. 92, undated). He empowered Barillon to offer James a sum of—in the extreme case—six hundred thousand livres. On 29 April an agreement was concluded, Louis promising five hundred thousand livres for an English fleet and the maintenance of two thousand English troops recalled from the provinces (ib. p. 99). In the meantime Albeville at the Hague strove to keep up the tension between his master and the Dutch government. The issue of the second Declaration of Indulgence, followed by the order to the clergy, furnished William with his opportunity. Zuylesteen was sent over on the pretext of congratulating James on the birth of the Prince of Wales, and on the day of the acquittal of the bishops the letter was signed which invited William of Orange to England (30 June). James, still unaware of his danger, had just declined Louis's offer of sixteen men-of-war, and this offer was not renewed. It was not till 30 Sept. that Louis offered a joint declaration against Holland, which James declined. Thus, when the expedition of William of Orange sailed, England, Holland, and France were all at peace, and there was no alliance, despite the popular belief, between England and France.

During July and August James held reviews at the Nore and at Portsmouth (Ellis Correspondence, ii. 63, 128), without neglecting the camp on Hounslow Heath (ib. ii. 24, 116). On 27 Aug. all governors and other officers were ordered to repair to their respective commands (Dartmouth MSS. p. 145). Till the latter part of September, however, appointments were made and honours bestowed in the sense of James's previous policy. On 23 Aug. he and the queen were loyally entertained at Bulstrode by Jeffreys (Ellis Correspondence, ii. 139), while the troops near London were reinforced by a small body of Irish soldiery (Clarendon Correspondence, ii. 190). On 21 Sept., however, a proclamation announced that in the approaching election catholics should remain ineligible as members of parliament, and the king thought of summoning the peers in order to apprise them of his design to undo his innovations. On 22 Sept. he informed the Bishop of Winchester of his intention to support the church of England (ib. pp. 189–91). On the same day a royal proclamation appealed to the country for support against the imminent Dutch invasion, and stated that the king found himself forced to recall the parliamentary writs, as his present place was at the head of his army (Life, ii. 185). On the 29th, the day on which came out a general pardon, from which, with blundering pedantry, the clergy were corporately excepted (Clarendon Correspondence, ii. 192), was also issued the declaration of the Prince of Orange. On the following day its circulation was prohibited (Bramston, p. 329; cf. Evelyn, iii. 59), and the king had interviews concerning it with both bishops and suspected temporal peers (Clarendon Correspondence, ii. 199–201). The westerly winds appeared to allow him time for concessions. He restored a number of displaced officials in church and state, beginning with Bishop Compton (30 Sept.), personally restored their old charter to the mayor and aldermen of the city of London (2 Oct.), restored other municipal charters (Dartmouth MSS. p. 175), gave audience to the bishops in London, and within a few days abolished the high commission, and virtually empowered the Bishop of Winchester, as visitor of Magdalen, to re-establish the old order of things there.

But no enthusiasm was roused. James, in answer to an accusation of ‘fraud’ in William's ‘Declaration,’ made a formal declaration, supported by evidence, of the genuineness of the birth of the Prince of Wales to an extraordinary council of peers and high dignitaries summoned for the purpose (22 Oct.). Two days afterwards Sunderland