William III. (16501702)

William III., king of England, born at The Hague, son of William II., Prince of Orange, by Mary, the daughter of Charles I.; during a contest on the part of the United Provinces with Louis XIV. was, in 1672, elected Stadtholder, and by his valour and wisdom brought the war to an end in 1678; married his cousin Mary, daughter of James II.; being invited to England, landed with a large army at Torbay, and on the flight of James to France, he and Mary were proclaimed king and queen of Great Britain and Ireland in 1689; the Scotch and the Irish offered resistance in the interest of the exiled monarch, but the former were defeated at Killiecrankie in 1689, and the latter at the battle of the Boyne in 1690; he was an able man and ruler, but his reign was troubled by an interminable feud with France, and by intrigues on behalf of James both at home and abroad; he died by a fall from his horse at Kensington just as a great war with France was impending; he was through life the adversary of the covetous schemes of Louis, and before his death he had prepared the materials of that coalition which, under Marlborough and Prince Eugene, brought Louis to the brink of ruin; his reign forms one of the great epochs in the history of England, and is known as the Revolution (16501702).

Definition taken from The Nuttall Encyclopædia, edited by the Reverend James Wood (1907)

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