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Stuart dynasty

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vi Preface to the Second Edition.
York, the last royal Stuart, practically transferred his family
rights to his cuusins, the present holders of England's
The Spectator having done me the honour to suggest that
certain views expressed in this volume might reflect those of
Her Most Gracious Majesty, it is my plain duty to declare
most distinctly that all opinions herein set forth have been
adopted or formed on my own responsibility, and as a result
of my own deliberate judgment. That a contrary idea should
have gained credence is perhaps owing to that good-fortune
which has brought me my Sovereign's approval, signified by
a graceful gift ever to be dearly prized.
Of the general popularity of this subject, aroused doubtless
by the Exhibition of 1888-9, I was apprised by no less a
person than the Eight Honourable W. E. Gladstone, who, on
March 8, 1890, wrote to me regarding the Stuarts and the
publication of this book, using the following words : —
" That family, on account of its primacy in calamity, which
Voltaire has so strikingly pointed out, will always form a
historical subject of profound interest."
It is fair, however, to state that Mr. Gladstone further
expressed the opinion that the relations of the Stuarts " with
this island " had been " prevailingly unhappy " — a phrase
which, whether we agree with it or not, does not imply
sympathy with the spirit of bitter severity lately prevalent.
It seems to have escaped comment that the Stuart Papers
in Appendix I. prove that the Chevalier de St. George and
his advisers were as ignorant as other onlookers of Lords
Oxford's and Bolingbroke's intentions before Queen Anne's
death. Anyhow, Mr. John Morley's averment that evidence
of their resolution to restore the Stuarts forthwith " was then
hidden in the despatch-boxes at St. Germain,"* falls to the
ground in the light of sentences such as these of the Duke of
Berwick : —
" I hardly believe Harley will open himself entirely."
" They are unwilling of trusting anybody with their secret."
" If Harley is a knave at the bottom," &c, &c.
* Morley's ' Walpole,' p. 43.

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