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Donald E. Wilkes, Jr. Collection: Chronology

The Law Library thanks Research Assistant Savanna Nolan, (J.D. '13) for her assistance with this project.

A Chronology of the Reign of King James II (1685-88) and The Glorious Revolution (1688-89)

N.B.–In the late 17th Century, much of continental Europe used the modern calendar, i.e., the New Style (N. S.) or Gregorian calendar, introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582.  England and Scotland, however, still used the Old Style (O. S.) or Julian calendar; they did not adopt the modern calendar until 1752.  Under both calendars it was always the same day of the week. Under the O. S. calendar New Year's Day was March 25; under the N. S. calendar New Year's Day was January 1.  In the 17th Century, O. S. calendar events were 10 days of the month behind the N. S. date.  Thus, the date William of Orange landed in England with his invasion force was Monday, November 5, 1688 O. S., and Monday, November 15, 1688 N. S., or, to provide both dates simultaneously, Monday, Nov. 15/5, 1688; and the date of the Presentation Ceremony in the Banqueting House at which William and Mary of Orange were offered and accepted the English throne, and thereby became King William III and Queen Mary II of England, was Wednesday, February 13, 1688 O. S., and Wednesday, February 23, 1689 N. S., or, to provide both dates simultaneously, Wednesday, Feb. 23/13, 1689/1688.

Generally, in this Chronology the dates given for events in England, Scotland, and Ireland are New Style (N. S.), followed by Old Style (O. S.); and the dates given for events on the continent of Europe are N. S.  The new year is recognized as beginning on January 1 N. S., on March 25 O. S. 

1685 1684
Feb. 16 Feb. 6 Death of King Charles II; accession of King James II.
May 3 April 23 Coronation of James II.
May 12 May 2 Earl of Argyle sets sail from Holland to invade Scotland.
May 19 May 9 Titus Oates convicted of perjury, 10 Howell’s State Trials 1079 (K.B. 1685).
May 28 May 18 Titus Oates whipped at the cart’s tail.
May 29 May 19 Parliament meets.
June 1 May 22 Titus Oates again whipped.
June 3 May 24 Duke of Monmouth sets sail from Holland to invade England.
June 21 July 11 Monmouth and a small group of supporters land at Lyme Regis.
June 28 June 18 Both Houses of Parliament pass and James approves act of attainder of Monmouth; Argyle captured while crossing River Clyde in Scotland.
June 30 June 20 Monmouth proclaims himself King at Taunton.
July 10 June 30 Argyle executed in Edinburgh.
July 12 July 2 James prorogues Parliament.
July 16 July 6 Battle of Sedgemoor; Monmouth defeated.
July 18 July 8 Monmouth captured.
July 25 July 15 Monmouth beheaded on Tower Hill.
Sept. Sept. During this month the Bloody Assizes occur in western England.
Sept. 12 Sept. 2 Lady Alice Lisle beheaded, 11 Howell’s State Trials 298 (1685).
Oct. 10 Sept. 30 Jeffreys elevated by James from Chief Justice of Court of King’s Bench to Lord High Chancellor.
Oct. 18   King Louis XIV revokes the Edict of Nantes
Oct. 21 Oct. 11 James dismisses Sir George Saville, Marquis of Halifax, the Lord President.
Oct. 23 Nov. 2 Elizabeth Gaunt burnt at the stake, 11 Howell’s State Trials 382 (1685).
Nov. 19 Nov. 9 Parliament meets; James delivers the Royal Speech.
Nov. 23 Nov. 13 James loses a key vote in the House of Commons by a margin of 183 to 182.
Nov. 26 Nov. 16 James loses another key vote in the House of Commons, 212-170.
Nov. 30 Nov. 20 James prorogues Parliament; James later dissolves Parliament on 12/2 July 1687, and it never meets again during his reign.
Feb.19 Feb. 9 James dismisses two of the Twelve Judges.
Apr. 30 Apr. 20 James dismisses four more judges.
May 2 Apr. 22 The Privy Council orders the common hangman to burn publicly a copy of Jean Claude’s Les Plaintes Protestants cruellement opprimes dans la Royaume de France.
July 1 June 21 Godden v. Hales decided, upholding the royal dispensing power, 11 Howell’s State Trials 1166 (K.B. 1686).
July 27 July 17 James creates a new Court of High Commission, headed by Jeffreys.
Aug.14 Aug. 4 Henry Compton, Bishop of London,  appears before the High Commission pursuant to a summons sent him.
Sept. 16 Sept. 6 The High Commission suspends Compton.
1687 1886
Jan. 16 Jan. 6 James dismisses Lawrence Hyde, Earl of Rochester, the Lord Treasurer.
February During this month closeting by James; James dismisses Henry Hyde, Earl of Clarendon, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland; and Richard “Lying Dick” Talbot, Earl of Tyrconnel, is sent to rule Ireland with the title of Lord Deputy.
Feb. 22 Feb. 12 James issues a Declaration of Indulgence for Scotland, suspending penal laws in matters ecclesiastical there.
Apr. 14 Apr. 4 James issues his first English Declaration of Indulgence, suspending the penal laws in matters ecclesiastical in England.
Oct. Nov. During these months rumors begin to circulate to the effect that James’s wife, Queen Mary of Modena, is pregnant.
Apr.   During this month William, Prince of Orange, begins preparations to invade England.
May 4 Apr. 27 James issues his second Declaration of Indulgence for England.
May 14 May 4 Privy Council orders the Church of  England to read the second Declaration of Indulgence during divine services the next four Sundays.
May 28 May 18 The Seven Bishops (except Archbishop Sancroft) present their petition to James.
June 3 May 27 Privy Council summons the Seven Bishops to appear before it on June 18/8.
June 18 June 8 Black Friday: The Seven Bishops appear before the Privy Council and are committed to the Tower on a charge of seditious libel.
June 20 June 10 Birth of Prince of Wales (known to history as the Old Pretender).
June 25 June 15 The Seven Bishops are released on bail.
July 9 June 29 The Trial of the Seven Bishops begins, 12 Howell’s State Trials 183 (K.B. 1688).
July 10 June 30 The Seven Bishops are acquitted.  Later the same day the Invitation of the Immortal Seven is dispatched to William.
July 13 July 3 James dismisses two more judges.
August During this month the first rumors begin to circulate to the effect the Prince of of Orange is going to invade England.
Aug. 26 Aug. 16 Final meeting of Court of High Commission.
Sept. 3 Aug. 24 Privy Council orders writs to issue for the convening of Parliament on November 27 O.S.
Sept. 22   William’s army begins the embarkation process.
Sept. 24   Louis XIV invades the Rhineland, beginning the Nine Years War.
Sept. 27 Sept. 17 Date of the last letter written by James to William.
Oct. 8   Embarkation of William’s army completed; the States of Holland approves William’s expedition.  Also on this date (Sept. 28 O.S.) James issues a proclamation announcing to the nation that a Dutch invasion is imminent and cancelling the planned meeting of Parliament in November.
October 10   William issues his first Declaration.
October 11   The last details for sailing are settled and the invasion fleet is ready to sail.
Oct.15 Oct. 5 James announces in his Privy Council that he will dissolve High Commission Court.
Oct. 24   William issues his second Declaration; in England today it is October 14 O.S., James II’s 55th birthday.

October 26

  William bids farewell to States of Holland.
October 28   The States-General of the United Provinces approved William's expedition.

October 29

  William’s fleet sets sail.
October 30   William’s fleet is driven back by a storm.
Nov. 1 Oct. 22 James holds extraordinary meeting of Privy Council to receive testimony and depositions proving that the Prince of Wales is his son by Queen Mary of Modena, 12 Howell’s State Trials 123 (P.C. 1688).
Nov. 5 Oct. 26 James dismisses Sunderland.
Nov. 11   On this Thursday William’s fleet puts to sea the second time.
Nov. 13   On this Saturday William’s fleet sails through the Straits of Dover and enters the English Channel
Nov.14   William’s 38th birthday and 11th wedding anniversary.
Nov. 15 Nov. 5 On this Monday William’s fleet arrives at Torbay; the army begins to disembark.
Nov. 16 Nov. 6 William’s army begins to march up the country.
Nov. 19 Nov. 9 William enters Exeter.
Nov. 22 Nov. 12 The first men of quality begin to repair to William.
Nov. 25 Nov. 15 The first of the provincial risings occurs, in Cheshire.
Nov. 28 Nov. 18 James leaves London for Salisbury.
Nov. 29 Nov. 19 James arrives in Salisbury.
Dec. 3 Nov. 23 Churchill defects to William.
Dec. 4 Nov. 24 Prince George defects to William.
Dec. 6 Nov. 26 Princess Anne flees London on her way to defect to William; James returns to London.
Dec. 10 Nov. 30 James proclaims a Parliament will meet on Jan. 25/15.
Dec. 20 Dec. 10 Early this Monday morning Queen Mary of Modena flees London heading for France, taking the Prince of Wales with her.
Dec. 21 Dec. 11 Early this Tuesday morning James flees London, heading for France; an assemblage of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal meets in in London and resolves to apply to William.
Dec. 22 Dec. 12 On this remarkable Wednesday James is seized by fishermen near Sheerness, on the Isle of Sheppey; and Jeffreys is seized in London. The terrible evening of Wednesday/Thursday is forever known as the Irish Night (or the Irish Fright).
Dec. 26 Dec. 16 On this Sunday James returns to London.
Dec. 28 Dec. 18 On this Tuesday, exactly one week after his abortive flight from London, James leaves London under guard heading for Rochester; later in the day William enters London.
Jan. 3 Dec. 23 On this Sunday, James flees Rochester, heading for France.
Jan. 5 Dec. 25 On this Tuesday, Christmas day O.S., James arrives in France; the Lords Spiritual and Temporal request William to take over the administration of the government and to summon a convention.
Jan. 6 Dec. 26 The Commons request William to take over the administration of the government and to summon a convention.
Jan. 8 Dec. 28 William agrees to assume administration of government and to summon a convention.
Feb. 1 Jan. 22 The Convention meets at Westminister.
Feb. 7 Jan. 28 The Commons resolves that James has abdicated the government and that the throne is thereby vacant.
Feb. 16 Feb. 6 The Lords Spiritual and Temporal resolve that William and Mary be made King and Queen.
Feb. 22 Feb. 12 The Convention approves the Declaration of Rights of 1689; William’s wife, Mary, Princess of Orange, arrives in England.
Feb. 23 Feb. 13 On this Ash Wednesday, William and Mary are offered and accept the crown in ceremonies at the Banqueting Hall in Whitehall Palace. They are immediately proclaimed King William III and Queen Mary II
Mar. 5 Feb. 23 William approves the first statute of his reign, the Parliament Act, 1689, 1 W. & M., ch. 1, transforming the Convention into the Convention Parliament.
Mar. 26 Mar. 16 William approves the second statute of his reign, 1 W. & M., ch. 2, an act suspending habeas corpus for the first time.
Apr. 1 Mar. 22 James lands in Ireland.
Apr. 21 Apr. 11 Coronation of William and Mary.
Apr. 28 Apr. 18 Jeffreys dies a prisoner in the Tower.

May 17

May 7 England declares war on France.

June 3

May 24 William approves the Toleration Act, 1 W. & M., ch. 18.
Sept. 2 Aug. 23 John Locke’s Two Treatises on Government is licensed to be printed

Dec. 26

Dec. 16 William approves the English Bill of Rights of 1689, 1 W. & M. sess. 2, ch. 2. Seven weeks later, on Feb. 16/6 1690/1689, William dissolves the Convention Parliament.
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