Friday, June 10, 2011

Jacobite White Rose Day

On June 10, 1688, James Francis Edward Stuart (to his supporters James III, to his detractors the "Old Pretender") was born to James II and his second wife, Mary of Modena. According to English law, a son would take precedence over an older daughter in the succession of the throne. Those who looked forward to James II's death so that his daughter Mary, who was married to William of Orange, would succeed to the throne, had their hopes shattered. Seven men wrote a letter to William, asking him to invade England for the throne.William was more than happy to oblige, and landed in England. Mary of Modena and her son fled to France, and James II followed shortly.
Now there were two opposing camps in England. The Williamites believed that William III had a right to sit on the throne. The Jacobites believed that William III was a usurper, and continued to pledge allegiance to James II, and when he died, to James III. The Jacobites remained a force to be reckoned with in European politics for nearly a century.
The white rose or white cockade was a symbol of Jacobitism. To symbolize their unity with France, James II's army wore white cockades (Williamites wore green plants or orange clothing), and the symbolism of the white rose/cockade carried over for centuries to the present day.
Happy White Rose Day!


  1. The Jacobites were a really interesting and diverse crew. I can kind of understand the perspectives advocated by both sides, as I can with a lot of other conflicts, and enjoy learning about the various personalities that determined the outcome. I actually write occasional guest posts for a British site called "Open Unionism", and I just did one about the Battle of Boyne for the anniversary on July 12. I did my best to give a fair shake to both King Jamie and King Billy ;-)

    By the way, are you of Scottish ancestry? Also, are you homeschooled? I am in my last year of homeschooling, actually, as I just turned 18 last week!

    1. Thank you for your kind words!
      Giving both sides due credit is something which I try to do, and which I am glad to hear that someone else does, especially with the controversial Battle of the Boyne.

      I do have some Scottish ancestry on my mother's side(along with English, Irish, German, French and others).
      And yes, I am homeschooled.

      Non Nobis Domini,

  2. Hi, Jordan,

    The Battle of Boyne really can be a complicated matter, as it had as much to do with international power games as it did with religious sentiment. The lines were often blurred between different groups in order to forward a mutual agenda, such as when William used a large of Catholic mercenaries in his army, even though he was supposedly the epitome of Protestantism!

    I noticed you also mentioned the above in your post on the "not-so Glorious Revolution" -- I commend you! Did you also hear the story saying that William was carrying a letter from the pope on his person during the battle and that the bells in Rome were rung in celebration of his victory? Plus, the Spanish ambassador at the Hague apparently had masses offered in hopese that the "Protestant Wind" would carry William safely to his destination! I found that pretty ironic!

    It's always nice to meet another homeschooler :-) Have you been homeschooled your whole life? I have, and am glad of it, and I really tend to think it let's the student customize learning better to his/her own style. And the public school system's level of immorality has just made it incresingly undesirable :-(

    God Bless,

    1. You are exactly right about the "Glorious Revolution". Both sides were a mix of Catholics and Protestants. I had heard that the Pope favored William, but didn't know about the Spanish Ambassador.

      I have been homeschooled for all my life except two years in Kindergarten and First Grade. I agree; homeschooling does customize education far better than the public schools ever can (especially with the idea of Common Core Curriculum). I am glad that you appreciate the sacrifice of your parents to homeschool.